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THE GRAY BOOK
Published by the
GRAY BOOK COMMITTEE S. C. V
By Authority, and Under Auspices of
The Sons of Confederate
ROLL OK HONOR
The list below contains the names of those whose contributed
funds made possible the publication and distribution of the Gray
A. II. Jennings, Lynchburg, Va.
W. W. Old, Jr., Norfolk, Va.
W. McDonald Lee, I rvington, Va.
E. II. Blalock, Washington, I). 0.
J. R. Price, Washington, N. C.
W. 0. Hart, New Orleans, La.
W. C. Galloway, Wilmington, N. C.
Edgar Scurry, Wichita Falls, Tex.
S. Y. Ferguson, Wichita Falls, Tex.
J. A. Jones, Atlanta, Ga.
J. Gwynn Gough, St. Louis, Mo.
F. R, Fravel, Ballston, Va.
Seymour Stewart, St. Louis, Mo.
W. E. Quin, Ft. Payne, Ala,
L. B. Hogan, Aiken s, Ark.
J. M. Ranson, Harpers Ferry, W. Va,
J. F. Tatem, Norfolk, Va.
J. S. Cleghorn, Lyerly, Ga,
J. H. Leslie, Leesburg, Va.
J. L. Chancellor, Jacksonville, Fla.
A. L. Gaston, Chester, S. C.
J. B. Westmoreland, Woodruff, S. C.
D. S. Etheridge, Chattanooga, Tenn.
C. H. Bennett, Washington, D. C.
R, A. Doyle, East Prarie, Mo.
W. J. McWilliams, Monroe, La.
N. B. Forrest, Biloxi, Miss.
Carl Hinton, Denver, Colo.
Ben Watts, Cave Springs, Ga.
J. H. Watkins, Monroe, La,
C. D. Murphy, Atkinson, N. C.
Rol)t. Blanks, Monroe, La.
S. L. Adams, South Boston, Va,
E. W. R. Ewing, Washington, D. C.
0. H. Fauntleroy, St. Louis, Mo.
Eoll of Honor 1
The Generally Misunderstood Emancipation Proclamation ... 5
The South Not Besponsible for Slavery 11
Treatment of Prisoners in the Confederacy 18
The South in the Matter of Pensions 32
Injustice to the South 35
The Secession of 1861 Founded Upon Legal Eight 41
The South and Germany 51
The Gray Book
TIIK reasons for the Cray Book are purely defensive and on behalf of the
truth of history, and the call for this publication comes from attacks,
past, present and continuing, upon the history, people and institutions
of this Southern section of our united country.
These attacks and untruthful presentations of so-called history demand re-
futation, for the South cannot surrender its birthright and we pray the day
may never dawn when it will be willing to abandon the truth in a cowardly or
sluggish spirit of pacifism. Nor de we care to see the day come when
"The lie, its work well done, shall rot,
Truth is strong and will prevail,
When none shall care if it prevail or not."
During the Great War, when the South and all other parts of our country
were straining every nerve to defeat a common foe, strange and unbelievable
as it may seem at such a time of crisis, there was a most remarkable flood of
misrepresentation, false analogy, and distorted historical statements con-
cerning our American history as it particularly relates to the Southern
people. Ignorance, as well as deliberate distortion of facts, contributed to
this unfortunate and ill-timed display.
A distinguished New Englander writing to a prominent officer of the Sons
of Confederate Veterans, stated, "so far as New England is concerned, preju-
dice is still deep," and those who keep abreast of things know that this state
of affairs is not confined to that section. We have the deliberate statement
of a well-known writer and literary worker, wdio knows whereof he speaks,
that "much atrocious sectionalism" tries to get into "publications which will
have a very wide circulation in a patriotic capacity."
Innumerable examples are on file and could be quoted but no one who reads
at all could have failed to note this mass of unfair and untruthful state-
emnts which for years has filled newspapers, magazines and periodicals of
Nor has this defamation ceased with the end of the Great War — it still
goes on, unabated, and there is a constant and strong stream of misrepresen-
tation and false historical statement flowing from the North. Moreover, this
constant reiteration of misstatement and falsehood has had the effect of
totally misleading and blinding to the truth of our country's history foreign-
ers wdio would naturally be unbiased and neutral. This was abundantly
proven by Lloyd George's remarkable cable to the New York Times on the
occasion of Lincoln's birthday during the las year of the Great War, "we are
fighting the same battle which your countrymen fought under Lincoln's
leadership fifty years ago. Lincoln did not shrink from vindicating obth
union and freedom by the terrible instrument of war."
It is scarcely necessary to call attention to the totally untrue inferences
to be drawn from this utterance, addressed to the world at large by England's
leading statesman. And in France when Leon Buorgeoise cited the trial
and execution of Major Wirz as a legal precedent for the trial of the German
Kaiser by the Allies, he exhibited the same total misconception of the truth
of our history, misled of course by years of false Northern teaching of our
country's affairs. And of late there has appeared a play, based upon the
life of Abraham Lincoln, which has been witnessed by thousands of people
in England and this country and tens of thousands of approving words
written concerning it, which totally misrepresents the spirit of that time and
whose whole trend is unfair and unjust to the South.
One of the points upon which the South is most frequently and pointedly
assailed and misrepresented is the claim that the North fought the war to
free the slaves. This statement is contrary to the assertions of Lincoln,
Grant and Sherman and contrary to all the common sense evidence of the
times. With scarcely one soldier in twenty in the Southern Armies owning
even one slave and with thousands of Northern soldiers being slave owners,
is it reasonable to assert that each went to war to right against his own
interests ? Is it not a repulsive thought that any mind could be so consti-
tuted as to believe that Robert E. Lee, Albert Sidney Johnson and Stonewall
Jackson fought their immortal fight to hold some negroes in slavery! Noth-
ing could be more unfair or untruthful than to represent the North as going
into the War Between the States as upon some holy crusade to free the
slaves from their Southern owners, to whom, it may be remarked in passing,
in very large measure they had been sold by this same North — and the money
And yet a prominent American author makes this assertion in an article
he wrote at the request of the United States Committee on Public informa-
tion, which article thus misrepresenting the South and hypocritically lauding
the North was taken by this government Committee to France and scattered
through her schools and among her children to teach them what "sort of
people we Americans are." Further, a well-known writer and former divine,
wrote an article, using most offensive terms, misrepresenting the South, which
was most prominently featured in the official publication of the Y. M. C. A.,
and was scattered through the cantonments and camps of France and this
country during the war.
Instances without number could be quoted, but these few sample cases show
the direction and nature of the tide of falsehood and misrepresentation con-
stantly pouring upon the Southern people.
Another point upon which we are constantly misrepresented is the applica-
tion of the term "rebellion" to the secession of the Southern states from the
Union. Without going into details, it is a conceded fact that during the
earlier days of the Union the right of a state to secede was generally recog-
nized. This right was asserted more than once by states in the North, who
later refused to allow the South to assert the same claim. Massachusetts
was a prominent believer in the rights of secession in the early days. John
Quincy Adams declared on the floor of Congress, at the time of the admission
of Texas as a state, that New England ought to secede, while the Hartford
Convention threatened similar steps while our country was actively engaged
in the war of 1812. Even at the time when the North declared the South
had no right to secede, although having themselves asserted that right pre-
viously, we see West Virginia encouraged and assisted in secession from the
mother state, while of late years the secession of Panama from Colombia
was not only recognized by this government, but the forces of the United
States made the secession an accomplished fact. The South is willing to
stand by her record as to secession — she is unwilling to submit to the false
claims now asserted by the North that the war was waged to grant liberty
to suffering slaves.
In the face of this state of affairs, the Sons of Confederate Veterans have
determined to offer refutation of a part at least of the false history which
almost overwhelms us and through this issue of this modest book, which we
now offer, we hope to attract attention to the truth, and do, in our feeble
way, our part toward establishing it.
A. H. Jennings, Chairman.
The Gkay Book Committee S. C. V.
Arthur H. Jennings, Chairman, Lynchburg, Va.
Matthew Page Andrews, Baltimore, Md.
C. H. Fauntleroy, St. Louis, Mo.
The Generally Misunderstood Eman-
TEEEE is no document so little read or so widely misunder-
stood as the Emancipation Proclamation — there is no sub-
ject so entirely misstated as Lincoln's connection with, and
attitude toward, freeing the negro.
Lincoln, who never freed a slave, is called "The Emancipator/'
while The Emancipation Proclamation, a war measure of the stern-
est description, holding within its possibilities an untold measure of
woe for the South, is almost universally hailed as a great "humani-
To those who wish to know the truth, attention is directed to
these several points especially — the document is self-styled "a war
measure; it not only did not free a single slave (this was done long
afterward by Congressional action and the 13th amendment) but it
expressly and particularly continued to hold in bondage the only
slaves it could have freed, viz., those in country held by Federal
armies and under the jurisdiction of the United States government ;
intended as a war measure to demoralize the South and destroy the
morale of Southern armies there is a pointed hint at servile insur-
rection in paragraph third from the last in the proclamation of
January 1st, 1863.
Attention is also called to Lincoln's attitude toward freeing the
negro, as clearly expressed by him in a letter to Horace Greely, just
prior to issuing the proclamation.
This letter, inserted below, is copied faithfully from the files of
the Xew York Tribune now in the Congressional Library. It most
abundantly speaks for itself. In it Lincoln makes use of expres-
sions which entirely dispose of any claim that he was waging war
to free the slaves and which confound those who so persistently mis-
represent the causes of the war between the states.
"My paramount object," he says, "in this struggle is to save the
Union, and is not, either to save or destroy slavery. If I could save
the Union without freeing any slave I would do it; and if I could
save it by freeing all the slaves, I would do it. What I do about
slavery and the colored race I do because I believe it helps to save
This letter and the terms and restrictions of the Proclamation
itself show beyond any doubt the entirely war-like purpose of the
proclamation and the entire absence of any humanitarian element
either in Lincoln's purposes in promulgating it or in the provisions
of the instrument itself.
Lincoln's Letter to Greeley, (from Vol. 22 New York Tribune,
August 25, 1862, page 4, column 3, on file in Congressional Li-
brary), with a few preliminary and non-essential sentences omitted:
Executive Mansion, Washington,
August 22, 1862.
"Hon. Horace Greeley:
Dear Sir :
I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under
the constitution. The sooner the National authority can be re-
stored, the nearer the Union will be 'the Union as it was. 7 If there
be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the *
same time save slavery, I do not agree with them. My p aga memrfc^p tfet
those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same V
time destroy slavery, I do not agree with them. My paramount
object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to
save or destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing
any slave, I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing all the
slaves, I would do it ; and if I could save it by freeing some and
leaving others alone, I would also do that. What I do about slavery
and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save this
Union ; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it
would help to save the Union. I have here stated my purpose ac-
cording to my view of official duty and I intend no modification of
my oft expressed personal wish that all men, everywhere, could be
Here follows the preliminary proclamation of Sept. 22, 1862,
and then afterward the "Emancipation Proclamation" itself, ex-
empting from its provisions all those slaves in territory held by
Federal arms and under jurisdiction of he U. S. government.
By the President of the United States of America.
I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States of America,
and Commander-in-Chief af the Army and Xavy thereof, do hereby
proclaim and declare that hereafter, as heretofore, the war will be
prosecuted for the object of practically restoring the constitutional
relation between the United States and each of the States and the
people therof in which States that relation is or may be suspended
That it is my purpose, upon the next meeting of Congress, to
again recommend the adoption of a practical measure tendering
pecuniary aid to the free acceptance or rejection of all slave States,
so called, the people whereof may not then be in rebellion against
the United States, and which States may then have voluntarily
adopted, or thereafter may voluntarily adopt, immediate or gradual
abolishment of slavery within their respective limits; and that the
cll'ort to colonize persons of African descent with < heir consent upon
this continent or elsewhere, with the previously obtained consent
of the governments existing there, will he continued.
That on the 1st day of January, A. I). 1863 all persons held as
slaves within any State or designated part of a State the people
whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States shall be
then, thenceforward, and forever free; and the executive govern-
ment of the United States, including the military and naval
authority thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of such
persons and will do no act or acts to repress such persons, or any
of them, in any efforts they may make for their actual freedom.
That the Executive will on the 1st day of January aforesaid, by
proclamation, designate the States and parts of States, if any, in
which the people thereof, respectively, shall then be in rebellion
against the United States ; and the fact that any State or the people
thereof shall on that day be in good faith represented in the Con-
gress of the United States by members chosen thereto at elections
wherein a majority of the qualified voters of such State shall have
participated shall, in the absence of strong countervailing testimony,
he deemed conclusive evidence that such State and the people
thereof are not then in rebellion against the United States.
That attention is hereby called to an act of Congress entitled "An
act to make an additional article of war/' approved March 13, 1862,
and which act is in the words and figure following:
"Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of
the United States of America in Congress assembled, That here-
after the following shall be promulgated as an additional article of
war for the government of the Army of the United States, and shall
be obeyed and observed as such :
Avt. — All officers or persons in the military or naval service of
the United States are prohibited from employing any of the forces
under their respective commands for the purpose of returning fugi-
tives f r om service or labor who may have escaped from any persons
to whom such service or labor is claimed to be due, and any officer
wdio should be found p'uiltv by a court-martial of violating this
article shall be dismissed from the service.
Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That this act shall take effect
from and after its passage."
Also to the ninth and tenth sections of an act entitled "An act
to suppress insurrection, to punish treason and rebellion, to seize
and confiscate the property of rebels, and for other purposes," ap-
proved July 17 1862, and which sections are in the words and
figures following :
Sec. 9. And be it further enacted, That all slaves of persons who
shall hereafter be engaged in rebellion against the Government of
the United States, or who shall in any way give aid or comfort
thereto, escaping from snch persons and taking refuge within the
lines of the army, and all slaves captured from such persons or de-
serted by them and coming under the control of the Government of
the United States, and all slaves of such persons found on (or)
being within any place occupied by rebel forces and afterwards
occupied by the forces of the United States, shall be deemed captives
of war and shall be forever free of their servitude and not again
held as slaves.
Sec. 10. And be it further enacted, That no slave escaping into
any State, Territory, or the District of Columbia from any other
State shall be delivered up or in any way impeded or hindered of
his liberty except for crime or some offense against the laws, unless
the person claiming said fugitive shall first make oath that the
person to whom the labor or service of such fugitive is alleged to
be due is his lawful owner and has not borne arms against the
United States in the present rebellion nor in any way given aid and
comfort thereto ; and no person engaged in the military or naval
service of the United States shall, under any pretense whatever,
assume to decide on the validity of the claim of any person to the
service or labor of any other person or surrender up any such person
to the claimant on pain of being dismissed from the service/'
And I do hereby enjoin upon and order all persons engaged in
the military and naval service of the United States to observe,
obey, and enforce within their respective spheres of service the act
and sections above recited.
And the Executive will in due time recommend that all citizens
of the United States who shall have remained loyal thereto through-
out the rebellion shall, upon the restoration of the constitutional
relation between the United States and their respective States and
people, if that relation shall have been suspended or disturbed, be
compensated for all losses by acts of the United States, including
the loss of slaves.
In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the
seal of the United States to be affixed.
Done at the City of Washington, this 22d day of Sep-
(seal) tember, A. D. 1862, and of the Independence of the
United States the eighty-seventh.
By the President :
William H. Sewabd, Secretary of State.
Taken from "A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of
the- Presidents 1789-1897, published by authority of Congress by
James D. Eichardson, a Eepresentative from the State of Tennessee,
Volume VI, Page 96."
By the President of the United Slates of America.
Whereas on the 22d day of September, A. D. 1862, a proclama-
tion was issued by the President of the United States, containing,
among other things, the following, to wit:
"That on the 1st day of January, A. I). 1868, all persons held as
slaves within any State or designated part of a State the people
whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States shall
be then, thenceforward, and forever free; and the executive gov-
ernment of the United States, including the military and naval
authority thereoof , will recognize and maintain the freedom of such
persons and will do no act or acts to repress such persons, or any
of them, in any efforts they may make for their actual freedom.
That the Executive will on the 1st day of January aforesaid, by
proclamation, designated the States and parts of States, if any, in
which the people thereof, respectively, shall then be in rebellion
against the United States ; and the fact that any State or the people
thereof shall on that day be in good faith represented in the Con-
gress of the United States by members chosen thereto at elections
wherein a majority of the qualified voters of such States shall have
participated shall, in the absence of strong countervailing testimony,
be deemed conclusive evidence that such State and the people there-
of are not then in rebellion against the United States."
Now, therefore, I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United
States, by virtue of the power in me vested as Commander-in-Chief
of the Army and Navy of the United States in time of actual armed
rebellion against the authority and Government of the United
States, and as a fit and necessary war measure for suppressing said
rebellion, do, on this 1st day of January, A. D. 1863, and in accord-
ance with my purpose so to do, publicly proclaimed for the full
period of one hundred days from the day first above mentioned,
order and designate as the States and parts of States wherein the
people thereof, respectively, are this day in rebellion against the
United States the following, to wit:
Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana (except the parishes of St. Bernard,
Plaquemines, Jefferson, St. John, St, Charles, St. James, Ascension,
Assumption, Terrebonne, Lafourche, St. Mary, St. Martin, and
Orleans, including the city of New Orleans), Mississippi, Alabama,
Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia
(except the forty-eight counties designated as West Virginia, and
also the counties of Berkeley, Accomac, Northampton, Elizabeth
City, York, Princess Anne, and Norfolk, including the cities of
Norfolk and Portsmouth), and which excepted parts are for the
present left precisely as if this proclamation were not issued.
And by virtue of the power and for the purpose aforesaid, I do
order and declare that all persons held as slaves within said clesig-
nated States and parts of States are and henceforward shall be free,
and that the executive government of the United States, including
the military and naval authorities thereof, will recognize and main-
tain the freedom of said persons.
And I hereby enjoin upon the people so declared to be free to
abstain from all violence, unless in necessary self-defense; and I
recommend to them that in all cases when allowed they labor faith-
fully for reasonable wages.
And I further declare and make known that such persons of suit-
able condition will be received into the armed service of the United
States to garrison forts, positions, stations, and other places and to
man vessels of all sorts in said service.
And upon this act, sincerely believed to be an act of justice,
warranted by the Constitution upon military necessity, I invoke the
considerate judgment of mankind and the gracious favor of Al-
In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the
seal of the United States to be affixed. Done at the city of
(seal) Washington, this 1st day of January, A. D. 1863, and of
the Independence of the United States of America the
By the President :
William H. Seward, Secretary of State.
Taken from "A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of
the Presidents 1789-1897, published by authority of Congress by
James D. Eichardson, a Eepresentative from the State of Tennessee,
Volume VI, Page 157/'
The South Not Responsible for Slavery
Neither the [introduction of Slaves into America nor their con-
tinued Importation can be Charged to the South.
By Arthur II. Jennings, Chairman Gray Book Com.
Undoubtedly England, Spain and the Dutch were primarily and
largely responsible for the introduction and the earlier importa-
tion of slaves to this country. As Bancroft says, "The sovereigns
of England and Spain were the greatest slave merchants in the
Later on, this country came into prominence in the traffic in
human bodies and DuBois, the negro historical writer says, "The
American slave trade came to be carried on principally by United
States capital, in United States ships, officered by United States
citizens and under the United States flag." Supporting this, Dr.
Phillips of Tulane University in his section of "The South in the
Building of the Nation," states, "The great volume of the slave
traffic from the earlier 17th century onward was carried on by
English and Yankee vessels, with some competition from the French
and the Dutch."
The responsibility for this home, or American, participation in
the slave importing business rests primarily and principally upon
New England and likewise, very largely, upon New York. It was a
boast and a taunt of pre-war days with pro-slavery orators that,
"The North imported ■ slaves, the South only bought them" — and
historians assert that "there is some truth in the assertion."
Indeed, it has been widely claimed that "No Southern man or
Southern ship ever brought a slave to the United States," and while
this statement is disputed and is perhaps not strictly true according
to the letter, it is undoubedly true in spirit, for the cases where a
Southern man or Southern ship could be charged with importing
slaves are few indeed, while New England, as well as New York,
were openly and boldly engaged in the traffic, employing hundreds
of ships in the nefarious business.
"Slavery," says Henry Watterson, in the Louisville Courier Jour-
nal, "existed in the beginning North and South. But the North
finding slave labor unsuited to its needs and, therefore, unprofitable,
sold its slaves to the South, not forgetting to pocket the money it
got for them, having indeed at great profit brought them over from
Africa in its ships.
Mr. Cecil Chesterman, a distinguished English historian, in his
"History of the United States" says on this point, "The North had
been the original slave traders. The African slave trade had been
their particular industry. Boston itself had risen to prosperity on
the profits of the abominable traffic."
The Marquis of Lothian, in his "Confederate Secession" makes
the statement that "out of 1500 American slave traders, only five
were from the South," but apparently this statement is contradicted
later in his volume when he says, "out of 202 slavers entering the
port of Charleston, S. C, in four years, 1796 to 1799 inclusive, 91
were English, 88 Yankees, 10 were French and 13 South. * * * "
Many indeed are the authorities that support the statement that
the South did not import slaves. "Slavery/' says Senator John W.
Daniel of Virginia," was thrust on the South, an uninvited, aye,
a forbidden guest" and Dr. Charles Morris, in his "History of Civ-
ilization" says "The institution of slavery was not of their making ;
it had been thrust upon their fathers against their violent oppo-
Mrs. Sea, in her book, "The Synoptical Eeview of Slavery," says
'"I have heard the statement made, and gentlemen of the highest
standing for scholarly attainment given as authority, that no South-
ern man ever owned a slave ship and that no slave ship handled by
a Southern man ever brought a cargo of slaves from Africa,"
Dr. Lyon G. Tyler, the scholarly President of William and Mary
College, Virginia, and an authority, says, regarding this statement,
"I am sure it can be said that no Southern man or Southern ship,
as far as is know, engaged in the slave trade."
References to Southern ships or Southern men as engaged in the
slave importing business are at best vague. The famous case of
the "Wanderer," one of the most noted of slave trading vessels, is
often mentioned and her ownership is credited to men of Charleston
and Savannah, but even if this be true she was built in New York,
her captain was a New York man, and a member of the New York
Yacht Club and the "Wanderer" sailed under the proud flag of
that Club when she went to the Congo after slaves. Her captain
was later expelled from the club for this offense.
The fact that there was domestic traffic in slaves, some of this
domestic traffic being carried on through coastwise trading, seems
to have confused some and induced them to believe the South en-
gaged in the slave importing business. On the other hand, the re-
sponsibility of New England and New York for the almost exclu-
sive monopoly of domestic participation in the slave importing
"business is most clearly established. Massachusettes looms largely
to the front when investigation into this gruesome subject is pur-
sued. The first slave ship of this country, the "Desire," was fitted
out in Massachusetts, and set sail for the coast of Africa from
Marblehead. Massachusetts was the first of all the colonies to
authorize the establishment of slavery by statute law, doing this
some decades before her example was followed by any of the South-
ern colonies. The first statute establishing slavery in America is
embodied in the Code of the Massachusetts Colony in New England,
adopted in 1641, and it should be realized that slave trading in
Massachusetts was not a private enterprise but was carried on by
authority of the Plymouth Rock colony.
The Puritans early evinced a tendency to enslave Indian cap-
tives and sell them out of the country, and from that early day
down to a period practically after the War Between the States had
begun (for the last slave ship, the Nightingale, sailing from Boston
and fitted out there, with 900 slaves on board was captured at the
mouth of the Congo River after the war had started ) New England,
with Massachusetts leading', stood preeminent in the slave trade.
Much of the prominence and wealth of these states was derived
from the slave trade and the commercial importance of such towns
as Newport, Rhode Island, was based entirely upon the traffic. Tt
is stated that Faneuil Hall, the famous "Cradle of Liberty" where
so many abolition speeches, denunciatory of the South were made,
was built with money earned in the slave traffic, as Peter Faneuil
was actively engaged in it. "It was a traffic," says Dr. Phillips, in
'The South in Building of the Nation,' "in whicr highly honorable
men like Peter Faneuil engaged and which the Puritans did not
condemn in the Colonial period." Stephen Girard is another prom-
inent philanthropist of the North who made money in slaves,
working large numbers of them on a Louisiana sugar plantation
which he owned, and it is asserted that Girard College was built
with money earned by the labors of these slaves.
In fact, DuBois asserts that the New England conscience which
would not allow slavery to flourish on the sacred soil of Massa-
chusetts did not hesitate to seize the profits resulting from the rape
of slaves from their African homes and their sale to Southern
planters. But, according to John Adams, it was not a tender con-
science but an economic reason upon which the forbidding of slaves
in Massachusetts was based, for he is quoted as saying, "Argument
might have had some weight in the abolition of slavery in Massa-
chusetts, but the real cause was the multiplication of laboring white
people who no longer would surfer the rich to employ these sable
rivals so much to their injury." Thomas Jefferson, who had intro-
duced a scathing denunciation of, and protest against, the slave
trade in the Declaration of Independence, withdrew it upon the
insistence of Adams and other New Englanders, and he indulges in
the following little bit of sarcasm at their expense, "our Northern
friends who were tender under these censures, for, though their
people have very few slaves, yet they had been considerable carriers
of them to others."
Economic reasons Avere the base of abolition of slavery in New
England. There is abundance of record to show dissatisfaction
with negro labor, who were stated to be "eye servants, great thieves,
much addicted to lying and stealing," and the superiority of white
labor was brought prominently forward. Furthermore, the mor-
tality of the negroes in the cold New England climate was great
and figures were brought forward to show how their importation
into the section was not "profitable." Governor Dudley in a formal
report in 1708 stated "negroes have been found unprofitable invest-
ments, the planters preferring white servants."
Boston was all along prominent in the slave trade, the "Conti-
nental Monthly" of New York, as late as January, 1862, being
quoted as saying, "The city of New York has been until late (1862)
the principal port of the world for this infamous traffic, the cities of
Portland and Boston being only second to her in that distinction."
"Slave dealers," it continues, "added much to the wealth of our
Vessels from Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, and New
Hampshire were early and largely engaged in the slave trade, and
it is a very significant fact that while duties, more or less heavy,
were imposed upon the imported slaves in Southern harbors, and
other harbors of the country, the ports of New England were offered
as a free exchange mart for slavers.
New England citizens were traders by instinct and profession,
and with the birth of commerce in the New World they eagerly
turned to the high profits of the African slave trade and made it a
regular business. The "Hartford Courant" in an issue of July,
1916, said, "Northern rum had much to do with the extension of
slavery in the South. Many people in this state (Connecticut) as
well as in Boston, made snug fortunes for themselves by sending
rum to Africa to be exchanged for slaves and then selling the slaves
to the planters of Southern states."
Rhode -Island at an early date had 150 vessels engaged in the slave
trade, while at a later date, when New York had loomed to the front
of the trade, the New York "Journal of Commerce" is quoted as
saying, "Few of our readers are aware of the extent to which this
infernal traffic is carried on by vessels clearing from New York and
down town merchants of wealth and respectability are engaged ex-
tensively in buying and selling African negroes, and have been for
an indefinite number of years."
As early as 1711 a slave market was established in New York
City in the neighborhood of Wall street where slaves from Africa
were brought to supply the Southern market.. There was another
prominent slave market in Boston. The slaves were hurried into
the South as fast as possible as hundreds died from cold and ex-
posure and the sudden change from a tropic African climate to a
bleak Northern temperature. The United States Dept. Marshall for
that New York district reported in 1856 that "the business of
fitting out slavers was never prosecuted with greater energy than at
present." In a year and a half preceding the War Between the
States eighty-five slave trading vessels are reported as fitting out
in New York harbor and DuBois writes that, "from 1850 to 1860
the fitting out of slavers became a flourishing business in the
United States and centered in New York City."
Although Massachusetts and New York were fchus prominent in
the business of enslaving and importing Africans and selling them
fcp South America and t lie Southern colonics, and later the Southern
states in the Union, oilier parts of New England took most promi-
nent part in the slave trade. Indeed, in the "Reminiscenses of
Samuel Hopkins," Rhode Island is said to have been "more deeply
interested in the slave trade than any other colony in New England
and has enslaved more Africans."
Thus beginning with that first slave ship of this country, the
"Desire" of Marblehead, Mass., the slave trade flourished in New
England and New York. The favorite method was to exchange
rum for negroes and to sell the negroes to the Southern plantations.
Federal laws were powerless to hold in check the keenness for this
profitable traffic in human flesh. As late as 1850, the noted slave
smuggler, Drake, who flourished and operated along the Gulf Coast,
is reported to have said, "Slave trading is growing more profitable
every year, and if you should hang all the Yankee merchants en-
gaged in it, hundreds more would take their places."
The outlawing of the traffic seemed but to stimulate it. From
the very inception of the institution of slavery in this country there
was protest and action against it throughout the Southern colonies.
The vigorous action of Virginia and her protests to the royal gov-
ernment to prohibit the further importation of slaves to her terri-
tory are well known. We have seen how Jefferson introduced into
the Declaration of Independence a protest against the slave trade
which he withdrew at the behest of New England. Every promi-
nent man in Virginia at this period was in favor of gradual emanci-
pation and there were more than five times as many members of
abolition societies in the South than in the North. Only with the
rise of the rabid abolitionists of New England and their fierce de-
nunciations of the South did the South abandon hope of gradual
emancipation. Touching this, Mr. Cecil Chesterman, quoted above,
states very pointedly in his "History of the United States," "what
could exceed the effrontery of men/' asked the Southerner, "who
reproach us with grave personal sin in owning property which they
themslves sold us and the price of which is at this moment in their
pockets?" Virginia legislated against slavery over a score of times;
South Carolina, protested against it as early as 1727, and in Georgia
there was absolute prohibition of it by law. Let it be remembered
that when the National Government took action and the slavery
prohibition laws of Congress went into effect in 1808, every South-
ern state had prohibited it.
But, as stated, the outlawing of the traffic seemed but to stimulate
it. In the earlier years of the 19th century thousands of slaves
were imported into this country. In the year 1819, Gen. James
Talmadge, speaking in the House of Kepresentatives, declared : "It
is a well known fact that about 14,000 slaves have been brought into
our country this year." And Sergeant, of Pennsylvania, said: "It
is notorious that in spite of the utmost vigilance that can be em-
ployed, African negroes are clandestinely brought in and sold as
This "vigilance" he speaks of, however, was much ridiculed by
others, and it was openly hinted that the efforts of the Federal
authorities to suppress the trade, even the look-out for slavers along
the African coast as conducted by vessels of the United States Navy,
were merely perfunctory, Blake in his "History of Slavery and the
Slave Trade," published in 1857, says: "It is stated upon good
authority that in 1844 more slaves were carried away from Africa
in ships than in 1 744 when the trade was legal and in full vigor ;"
while in the year immediately preceding the opening of the War
Between the States, John C. Underwood is quoted as writing to the
New York Tribune : "I have ample evidence of the fact that the
reopening of the African slave trade is an accomplished fact and
the traffic is brisk." Not only was the traffic brisk with the United
States but thousands of slaves were being smuggled into Brazil.
Southern members of Congress complained of the violations of
the law and the illegal importation of slaves into their territory.
Smith, of South Carolina, said on the floor of Congress in 1819 :
"Our Northern friends are not afraid to furnish the Southern
States with Africans;" and in 1819, Middleton, of South Carolina,
and Wright, of Virginia, estimated the illicit introduction of
slaves at from 1300 to 1500 respectively.
There is interest in the striking fact that one year before the
outbreak of the War Between the States, and at the time when the
rabid abolitionists of New England and the North were most vigor-
ous in their denunciations of the South and the slave holders, there
were in Massachusetts only 9000 free negroes, while in Virginia
there were 53,000 of these negroes, free, and able to go where they
pleased ; and it is significant that about as many free negroes chose
to live in Southern slave holding states as dwelt in Northern states ;
and many of these free negroes owned slaves themselves and were
well-to-do citizens. In the city of Charleston, S. C, some three
hundred free negroes owned slaves themselves.
In closing this article the following letter, which appeared in the
columns of the New Orleans Picayune years ago, may be of in-
"My father, Capt. John Julius Guthrie, then of the United States Navy,
while executive officer of the sloop of war "Saratoga" on April 21st, 1861,
captured at the mouth of the Congo River, on the west coast of Africa,
the slave ship 'Nightingale' with 900 slaves aboard. The slaver was
owned, manned and equipped in the city of Boston, Mass., and in refer-
ence to the date it will appear that her capture was after the assault on
Fort Sumter and the Baltimore riot consequent upon the passage of the
6th Massachusetts Regiment through the city. This was the last slaver
caputred by an American war ship and as my father soon after resigned
and went in to the Confederate service, her captain and owners were never
brought to trial. All this is a matter of record on file at the Navy Depart-
nient in Washington. r rinis it will be seen that the last capture of a
slaver was by a Southern officer and the good people of Massachusetts
were ngaged in this nefarious business at the beginning of our unhappy
(Signed) J. Julius Guthrie,
Too Long has the South had the odium of slavery forced upon her.
With the institution thrust upon her against her protest, the slaves
flourished in her boundaries on account of climate, and economic
conditions favored the spread of the institution itself. The facts
set forth above indicate the innocence of the South in foisting this
feature upon our national life, as well as her freedom from guilt in
the continued importation of slaves into this country. While no
claim is made for special virtue in that the South did not engage
in the slave importing business as the North did, yet the facts as
they exist are to her credit. With the facts in her favor, the South
sits still under the false indictments constantly made against her by
the section of our country most responsible for the whole trouble.
Willing to abide by the verdict of posterity, if the verdict is based
upon the truth, and not upon the false statements of Northern his-
torians, writers and speakers, and willing to accept her share, her
full share of due responsibility, this section, in justice to her dead
who died gloriously in a maligned cause, and to her unborn chil-
dren, inheritors of a glorious heritage, must set forth to the world
the facts as they are, neither tainted with injustice to others nor
burdened with hypocritical claims of righteousness for herself ; and
these facts will establish her in the proud position to which she has
all along been entitled among the people of the earth.
Treatment of Prisoners in the
By Matthew Page Andrews
Author of History of the United States, Dixie Book of Days, &c, &c.
Only a generation ago, Eaphael Semmes, commander of the Con-
federate warship Alabama, was widely advertised as a "pirate" and
Robert E. Lee was stigmatized as a "traitor." Thousands of young
Americans were taught so to regard these Southern leaders. Xow,
however, these terms are nearly obsolete ; while many Northern his-
torians, such as Charles Francis Adams, who fought on the Federal
side in the War of Secession, and Gamaliel Bradford, who grew
up after the war, have delighted in honoring Lee and other South-
ern leaders as Americans whose character and achievements are the
ennobling heritage of a united Nation.
It was more or less natural that Americans should have been led
astray of the truth in the heat of sectional strife and partisan ex-
pression. Misconceptions have arisen out of every war. In fifty
years, however, Americans have made greater progress in overcom-
ing war prejudices than the people of other lands in twice or thrice
This is encouraging, yet the fact that the greater number of our
textbooks, and consequently our schools, teach that "the cause for
which the South fought was unworthy ;" that the Southern leaders
"were laboring under some of the most curious hallucinations which
a student of history meets in the whole course of his researches;"
and that "the South was the champion of the detested institution of
slavery," indicates a lamentable state of historical ignorance
on the part of those who should know better. The characters of the
Southern leaders are no longer aspersed but their motives are be-
smirched or clouded and their cause unjustly condemned because it
is still widely misunderstood.*
Furthermore, since the beginning of the World War of 1914, the
conduct of the Prussians, together with the character of their cause,
has been compared with the character of the Confederate conduct
of the War of Secession, together with the cause and character of
Southern statesmen. Reputable magazines of wide circulation and
writers of prominence have compared Confederate treatment of
prisoners with Prussian outrages in Belgium and France. Ameri-
can newspapers also have printed literally thousands of such com-
parative references. Fortunately, nine-tenths of these comparisons
*Incredible as it may seem, these quotations are taken from three of the
most widely used history text-books in America at the present time. They
have been written by men honored with high positions in the teaching-
have been made through ignorance of the Tacts and not through any
malicious desire of the authors to defame the fair name of a single
fellow-American on the Confederate side or the "lost cause" which
he represented with unsurpassed devotion and valor.
Side by side with these accusations, in some cases, generous praise
is bestowed upon the former "pirate" Semmes as having furnished
a model for warfare on the high seas; and it is freely stated that
his observance of all the requirements of international custom ami
of the dictates of humanity in civilized warfare held not only to the
letter, but also to the full spirit of the law. It is not denied, also,
that Lee, the Confederate chieftain and quondam "traitor" has
offered the world the noblest example of orders of conduct for an
army in the enemy's country that all history can show, and that
these orders were also carried out "even to the protection of a
farmer's fence rails !" The Boston Transcript, for example, took
occasion, in 1917, to publish these orders in full.
Nevertheless, in regard to the treatment of prisoners, the sweep-
ing condemnation of James G. Blaine, delivered in an outburst of
war-inspired and partisan condemnation of the South is still, in a
general way, believed by Americans who have, of late, been echoing
them, although in milder terms and in limitation of the number of
those held to have been guilty. Mr. Blaine declared some ten years
after the war: "Mr. Davis [President of the Confederate States]
was the author, knowingly, deliberately, guiltily, and willfully, of
the gigantic murder and crime at Andersonville. And I here, before
God measuring my words, knowing their full extent and import
declare that neither the deeds of the Duke of Alva in the low
countries, nor the massacre of Saint Bartholomew, nor the thumb
screws and engines of torture of the Spanish Inquisition, begin to
compare in atrocity with the hideous crimes of Andersonville."
Historians do not now accept this statement as true, solemnly
made as it was by a man who, a few years later, barely missed elec-
tion to the highest office in the gift of the people of the United
States. Furthermore, American historians, even if inclined to bias,
do not now go into any detail in the matter of these charges. They
refer the reader, however, to a mass of matter the major part of
which is as false today as when James G. Blaine based upon it his
colossal libel of Jefferson Davis and the military and civil authori-
ties of the Southern Confederacv. As above stated, the so-called
"general" historian has dropped this matter in detail, though Mr.
Blaine exclaimed dramatically that it would remain as the "blackest
page" recorded in the annals of all time.* On the other hand,
* James Ford Rhodes, for example. (Vol. V. pp. 483-515) has done better
than his contemporaries in this respect; and the Photographic History of
the Civil War presents an even more extended review. Elsewhere. Rhodes
draws what one may call the "significantly provincial and incomplete" con-
clusion, (Vol. VI. p. 29, italics inserted) : 'Now that the Southern people
were rid of the incubus of slavery their moral standards were the same as
those at the North ; and they felt that they were amenable to the public
opinion of the enlightened world."
innumerable monographs have been written upon this subject, four-
fifths of which are either false per se, or else based on false evidence
such as that which has misled so many Americans, from the time of
James G. Blaine and contemporary historians, to editors of and
writers in magazines and newspapers of the second decade in the
twentieth century. With this one notable exception, American his-
tory is rapidly freeing its narrative of misconception in all of its
phases. It is here that we now find the last great stronghold of sec-
If four-fifths of the monographs on prison life in the South are
false per se, or based on false evidence, it follows that one-fifth are
true or approximately so. The writer has had the privilege of
knowing personally a distinguished Union Veteran who suffered
privations and hardships at Lib by Prison. Published in 1912, his
story, as it affects his personal experiences, is doubtless true in every
respect; yet this same good American helped to publish simultan-
eously another volume by one of his comrades that is a tissue of
falsehood and slander from beginning to end. The veracious author
seemed to take his mendacious comrade at his face value, and he
advertised as worthy history a gross historical libel.*
Again with reference to a portion of the truthful fifth part of
the testimony in monographs or special articles, it should be said
that a concerted attempt has apparently been made by certain in-
terestd individuals and groups to cry down, suppress, or defame the
authors of these monographs. The average good American citizen,
who likes to believe that the people of one section "about average
rip to" the people of another, is moved to amazement at the extreme
violence of the attacks made upon men who, on this one subject,
would say even the least in defense of their former opponents.
"God knows we suffered there," said one of the ex-prisoners of An-
*This viciously false volume revives the following post-bellum slander
on the officers in Forrest's command at Fort Pillow : "The rebels began
an indiscriminate slaughter, sparing neither age nor sex, white nor black,
soldier nor civilian. The officers and men seemed to vie with each other
in the work; men, women, and even children were deliberately shot down,
beaten and hacked with sabres. Some of the children, not more than ten
years old, were forced to stand and face their murderers while being shot;
"the sick and wounded were butchered without mercy, the rebels entering
the hospital and dragging them out to be shot, or killing them as they lay
unable to offer resistance. Numbers of our men were collected in lines or
groups and deliberately shot; some were shot in the river; some on the
bank, and the bodies of the latter, many yet living, were kicked into the
Tiver. The huts and tents where the wounded had sought shelter were set
on fire, both that night and the next morning, while the wounded were
still in them, and those who tried to get out were shot. One man was
fastened to the floor of a tent by nails through his clothing and then
burned, and one was similarly nailed to the side of a building and then
ourned. These deeds were renewed the next morning when any wounded
who still lived were sought out and shot." . .
dersonville, "bill wo found out thai the Confederate soldier had our
Pare and often less, and he was often as shoeless as we, in time, be-
came. We were the worse oil' chiefly because of enforced confine-
ment, hope deferred, and Longing for borne and freedom." Men who
have made such statements as these or who have defended their
former captors and fellow-countrymen Prom the charge of deliberate
cruelty, have been bitterly attacked in Grand Army Posts — not by
men of similar liberal ideals, but by narrow-minded men who were
otherwise good citizens and by bounty-jumpers and deserters who
made it their business to fan the flames of sectional passion so that
the public would continue to support them in the way which has
been exposed by Charles Francis Adams. In some eases, the thought
of all this false testimony weighed like a heavy load upon the eon-
sciences of patriotic Union Veterans who loved their whole country
and honored their former Confederate foes as opponents worthy
of their steel. One of these men who was thus moved to write what
he held to be true had long looked forward to the honor of com-
manding his Department of the Grand Army of the Republic. His
published narrative defending the motives of his former captors
cost him this honor, even though it contained no single word or
phrase that reflected unfavorably upon the cause of the North. An
historian who undertook to inquire about the veracity of the narra-
tive was told by well-meaning men across the Continent from the
author that "the book was untrustworthy" and that the author was
unreliable. A quiet and careful investigation was, however, made
by him into the character and career of the "witness," and the favor-
able testimony of those in a position to know him best in all his
relations led the historian to place the greatest confidence in his
The charges preferred against the authorities of the Confederacy
were, for several years, made the most important subject under con-
sideration by the people and even the government of the United
States. During that period, the magnitude and violence of the ac-
*The historian corresponded with this Veteran's friends and acquaint-
ances and interviewed others. One of them, a well-known and honored
Judge wrote, May 7, 1917: "Shortly after the publication of his book the
Grand Army of the Republic met at . . . . , and considerable feeling
was expressed by . . . .'s comrades there. Some disagreed with him
radically and the feeling against him was so intense that it prevented
his election as Department Commander. He certainly would have been
elected unanimously if it had not been for the publication of his book. At
the time I was holding Court in .... instead of Judge . . . . ,
the resident Judge there, and remember talking with .... after the
election. He said he regretted that his comrades took the attitude they did
but nevertheless he had not stated anything but the truth in his book and
if it had cost him one of his life's ambitions he could only regret the
misguided attitude of his fellows, but he did not regret doing justice to a
man to whom he thought grave injustice had been done." [In the above
quotation, names of individuals are not given for fear of causing bitter
attacks by partisans on others. All names and correspondence are on file
and may be published later.]
cusations obscured much more weighty and serious problems and
placed the South on the defensive, because it was not the better
element in the North but the radical and partisan minority that
had, for the moment, the ear of the country and the world. Secre-
tary Stanton used the following language in one of the official
reports of the Federal Government: "The enormity of the crime
committed by the Rebels towards our prisoners for the last several
months is not known or realized by our people, and cannot but fill
with horror the civilized world when the facts are fully revealed.
There appears to have been a deliberate system of savage and bar-
barous treatment and starvation, the result of which will be that
few, (if any) of the prisoners that have been in their hands during
the past winter will ever again be in a condition to render any ser-
vice, or even to enjoy life." At the same time, the United States
Sanitary Commission declared that : "The evidence proves, beyond
all manner of doubt, a determination on the part of the Rebel
authorities, deliberately and, persistently practiced for a long time
past, to subject those of our soldiers who have been so unfortunate
as to fall into their hands to a system of treatment which has re-
sulted in reducing many of those who have survived and been per-
mitted to return to us to a condition, both physically and mentally,
which no language we can use can adequately describe
The conclusion is unavoidable, therefore, that these privations and
sufferings have been designedly inflicted by the military and other
authorities of tlie Rebel Government, and could not have been due
to causes which such authorities could not control/'
A widely circulated volume by a former prisoner at Andersonville,
the largest of the Confederate prison camps, contains the following
statement: "Inside of this' inclosure, thirteen thousand, two hun-
dred and fifty-three Union soldiers perished. There is no spot on
the face of the earth where man's inhumanity to man was more
fully demonstrated than in this terrible place, and the name of
Andersonville will be a dark spot on American civilization for
centuries to come. ... To Jefferson Davis, his cabinet ad-
visers, and to the demons whom they sent to these prisons to carry
out their devilish plans, and who appear to have been well adapted
for that kind of work, belongs the infamy of perpetrating one of
the most horrible crimes known in the history of the world, and one
which will forever remain a blot and a stigma on that page of our
country's history. . . . And in all the Southern prisons, as
near as could be ascertained, about 65,000 men fell victims to rebel
barbarity. Who can doubt but that it was a fairly concocted scheme
of their captors to destroy them, and that, too, in the most horrible
The official Report of the Committee in Congress on the conduct
of the war contains the following statement: "The subsequent
history of Andersonville has startled and shocked the world with
a tale of horror, of woe, and death before unheard and unknown
to civilization. No pen can describe, qo painter sketch, qo imagi-
nation comprehend its t'tsi r I'u 1 and unutterable iniquity. It would
seem that the concentrated madness of earth and hell had found
its linal Lodgmeni in the breasts of /hose who i/naugurated the Re-
bellion and con / rolled /he policy <>/ the Confederate government,
and that the prison "I Andersonville had been selected for the most,
terrible human sacrifice which the world had ever seen. Into its
narrow walls were crowded thirty-five thousand men, many of them
the bravest and host, the most devoted and heroic of those grand
armies which carried the flag of their country to linal victory. For
long and weary months here they suffered, maddened, were mur-
dered and died . . . these men, these heroes, horn in the Image
of (iod, thus crouching and writhing in their terrible torture and
calculating barbarity, stand forth in history as a monument of the
surpassing horrors of Andersonville as it shall be seen and read in
all future time, realizing in the studied torments of their prison
house the ideal of Dante's Inferno and Milton's Hell."
Those historians who have at all investigated the matter regard
such statements as partisan and untrue ; but many historical writers
who have not so investigated perpetuate in modified form, these
same falsehoods. When, for instance, so great a periodical as Col-
lier's Weekly descends to such sectionalism, it does so in ignorance
and not in malice. For this reason, perhaps, any such injustice as
the following is more to be deplored. In its issue of February 17,
1917, the leading editorial article is entitled "The Morals of
Slavery/' in which a resume is given of Prussian outrages in Bel-
gium under Yon Bissing. The writer, who may Jiave been an
occasional contributor of national and international prominence,
draws the following comparison, italics inserted :
"The only prototype that the history of our own country affords
for General Von Bissing is Captain Henry Wirz, commanding offi-
cer of Andersonville prison. He pleaded 'military and economic
necessity' as an excuse for liis acts, and in a general way defended
his cruelties with the same arguments that have been advanced by
the German Government in defending the invasion of Belgium, the
shooting of hostages, and the merciless exploitation of the labor and
resources of the country. He acted under orders; he did only what
conditions compelled him to do. His defense was supremely logical
to minds that had grown tolerant of the harshness of tear. But even
at a time when leniency was exercised in the treatment of spies,
blockade runners, privateersmen, and freebooters, the Union Gov-
ernment drew the line at Wirz's offenses. The severe logician was
tried in 1865 by a military commission and promptly hanged. It
is to his credit that he did not attempt to jusify his cruelty to the
prisoners by pleading his intention of improving their morals."
Collier's Weekly is, perhaps, the most popular of the publica-
tions that reprinted, with variations, an ancient error. The history
of the historical statement of the prison charges runs from the
early "conviction of direct complicity" on the part of all the civil
and military authorities of the Confederacy to the indirect charge
against them through Captain Wirz, a poor subordinate of Swiss
birth, who was one of the commandants at the Andersonville prison.
Him his accusers hanged after the most unjust trial that this coun-
try has ever known. As late as 1917, the distinguished editor of
"American State Trials" and the Vice-President of the Inter-
national Law Association was so far led astray by the "evidence"
as to prepare a preface to the volume, which was separately printed
and circulated, approving the charges brought against Wirz as pro-
It is recognized by all who have carefully investigated the prison
question that the civil and military Committees and Commissions
appointed under strongly partisan auspices to look into the prison
question rendered reports that are now known to be false. Shortly
afterwards, Southern officials, hampered as they were at that time,
made replies to these accusations and published some of them.
These replies of the Southern officials contend:
(1) That although it is not denied that there was terrible suf-
fering and great mortality in Confederate prisons, this was due to
circumstances beyond their control.
(2) That if the death rate be adduced as "circumstantial evi-
dence of barbarity," the rate was as high or even higher in the
majority of the prisons in the North, where there was an abundance
of food and where shelter could easily be provided.**
*It must be remembered that this subordinate officer was convicted of
conspiring with Confederate authorities in the crimes alleged to have been
**The Confederate prisoners, including the three thousand officers con-
fined at Johnson's Island suffered terrible tortures from both cold and
hunger. Their rations were, by order of the Federal authorities, cut down
to a daily portion of one-half a loaf of hard bread, and a small piece of
salt pork, which was served at noon. At Fort Delaware, in the summer
of 1864, the rations were reduced to two crackers, together with an inch
square of pickled meat and a cup of weak coffee. The only other meal of
the day consisted of two crackers with a cup of very weak bean soup. Oc-
casionally a quarter of a loaf of light bread was substituted for the crackers.
The crackers were o.ten filled with worms, which many of the prisoners
ate with a view to sustaining life. In the coldest weather two bushels
of coal a day were allowed each "barracks" of 320 men. This supply of
fuel lasted but a portion of the twenty-four hours. Hospital service
was so bad at this prison that many of the men preferred to suffer and die
among their friends in the "layers" of superimposed hard plank bunks.
Official figures given out by Secretary Stanton show that 26,436 Confed-
erates died in Northern prisons. Each man was allowed one blanket or
an overcoat. Prisoners could not have both. They were deprived of money
and allowed a limited amount of sutler's checks with which they could
buy tobacco, etc., but no additional food. The dead, with their bodies
stripped of clothing, were thrown into long ditches; so that years after-
wards a Committee authorized by Congress could not determine the dead
or put up tombstones.
On the other hand, it is good to record that Confederate ex-prisoners
themselves, out of their poverty, erected a memorial to Colonel Richard
(3) That in the South the same rations were given the prisoners
and the guards; hut that variety in food could not be had or trans-
ported on the broken-down railway system of a non-manufacturing
country, which system could not or did not provide sufficient clothes
and food even for the Con federate soldiers in the field.*
(1) That the Confederacy had arranged for the exchange of
prisoners by a special cartel, which cartel was deliberately disre-
garded by the Federal authorities.**
(5) That they offered to permit Federal Surgeons to bring medi-
cal supplies to the prisoners, which offer was not accepted.
( (5 ) That, as the needs of the prisoners increased, they offered to
buy (finally with cotton or with gold) supplies for the prisoners,
which offer was ignored.
Owen, commandant at Camp Morton, Indiana. This noble man did all he
could to mitigate the hardships of prison life, and scores of Confederate
prisoners confined there and transferred to other prisons have borne pa-
thetic testimony to his allowance of both overcoats and blankets (two).
The rations were limited under conditions beyond the control of Colonel
Owen, but these were "mercifully changed" in order to prevent the ravages
*The point as to variety in food is very important; for the lack of a
wholesome variety caused certain diseases among the prisoners not suffered
by the guards and Confederate soldiers fed on the same rations. The
former, for example, could not, in many cases, eat the unbolted meal to
which the Southerner was accustomed. This was particularly true of the
great number of German and other prisoners of foreign birth, of whom
there were many thousands in the Southern prisons. The first group of
prisoners sent to Andersonville were several hundred foreigners. A large
number of these foreigners and many native Americans from the Northern
States could not at first eat this unbolted meal without experiencing more
or less serious digestive trouble which left them in a dangerously weakened
condition. Towards the close of the war a trainload of Federal prisoners
northward bound halted by the side of another train returning Confederate
prisoners to the South. The soldiers leaned from the windows of their
coaches and bantered each other. The "Yanks" hurled at the "Rebs" some
pieces of the despised "corn pones" which were to be exhibited as proof
of the barbarity of "Rebel" fare. To their surprise the half-starved
"Rebel" prisoners seized these rejected "Rebel" rations, ate them raven-
ously, and yelled for more.
In 1918, under the caption, "How corn may help win the War," the
United States Food Administration sent out an advertisement which reads:
"When we use more corn, the Allies — our associates in the war — can use
more wheat. They can not use cornmeal instead of wheat in their daily
diet, as we do, because neither their cooks nor their appetites are adapted
**The older partisan accounts and present conparisons based upon the
accounts attempt to explain this by the statement that the Confederates
refused exchange to negroes ; but this point was brought up long after the
cartel was systematically disregarded. There is an abundance of proof of
this. The following extract from a letter from General U. S. Grant to
General B. F. Butler, 18th August, 1864, over a year after the terms of the
cartel were violated, is indicative of the attitude of the highest Federal
officer towards exchange: "It is hard," wrote Grant, "on our men in
Southern prisons not to exchange them, but it is humanity to those left
in the ranks to fight our battles."
( 7 ) That medicines had been treated by the Federal Government
as contraband of war, so that the people of the South were often
deprived of necessary remedies, not only for their own sick and
■wounded, but the prisoners as well.
(8) That prior to the period of the greatest mortality at An-
dersonville, the Confederate authorities offered to release thousands
of prisoners, without requiring any equivalent in exchange if the
Federal Government would provide transportation for them. This
offer was not accepted by the Federal Government until too late to
save the lives of thousands of those who died.
(9) That the control of the prisons in the North was turned over
by Secretary Stanton and the vindictive and partisan men, who
were later responsible also for the crimes of Reconstruction, to the
lowest element of an alien population and to negro guards of a
criminal type; and that such men as President Lincln, Seward,
McClellan and the best people of the North were intentionally kept
in ignorance of conditions in Northern prisons while officially fur-
nished with stories as to "the deliberate cruelties'- practiced in the
General Robert E. Lee, who, for a time, was held as particeps
criminis in the alleged wholesale barbarity, but whose word has
never been found to be false, says of Libby and Belle Isle : "I
never knew that any cruelty was practiced, and I have no reason to
believe that it was practiced. I can believe, and have reason to
believe, that privations may have been experienced by the prisoners
because I know that provision and shelter could not be provided
for them." Again he stated, in April, 1867, that "The laws of the
Confederate Congress and the orders of the A¥ar Department di-
rected that the rations furnished prisoners of war should be the
same in quantity and quality as those furnished enlisted men in the
army of the Confederacy, and that the hospitals for prisoners should
*This Confederate defense against the charge of wholesale and deliberate
cruelty to prisoners is amply sustained by the historical evidence at hand.
The impartial historian, looking for all the salient facts, does find, however,
as a kind of flaw in tne frankness of the Confederate statement, admissions
on the part of reputable authorities that there was evidence of executive
failure in the commissary department. It may be said, however, that the
same failure, in a more exaggerated form., was evident in the supply de-
partment of the Army of Northern Virginia. The immediate cause of the
surrender of General Lee was the failure of support on the part of his
Although it is known that Abraham, Lincoln was told of the alleged cruel-
ties in Southern prisons and that he was urged to denounce them publicly,
it is- a fact that President Lincoln never did so commit himself. There is.
on the contrary, evidence to show that he did not believe them. Being a
keen judge of men, he well knew the character of both the accused and the
accusers, the latter including both those who wilfully misrepresented the
matter and those who honestly believed the misrepresentations.
be placed on the same footing as other ( 'on federate States hospitals
in all respects."*
Turning again to A.ndersonville prison, we find that the officia]
order for the location of "a Large prison" in the South in lsiil was
that it should have "a healthy locality, plenty of pure water, a
running stream, and, if possible, shade trees, and in the immedi-
ate neighborhood of grist and saw mills."
The Confederate authorities have been denounced because they
did not cause to he constructed a sufficient number of barracks at
Andrsonville, since the very order for its founding required that it
he in the neighborhood of saw mills. This order, was, indeed, carried
out as strictly as possible in accordance witli the other conditions,
hut it must he remembered that the South, having very few manu-
factories, could not supply the tools with which to build ; and that
the saw mills nearest Andersonville, being very primitive affairs,
were not able to supply lumber sufficient for the stockade, much less
for the barracks. But few of the officers of the guard had "shanties"
and these were generally built of the refuse of the mills. Some of
the lumber used was brought a distance of eighty miles and all of
the available rolling stock of the Confederacy was taxed to its
utmost capacity in transporting supplies for the army in the field
and to the prisons. Tt should also he remembered that "during the
"Hospital No. 21 in Richmond, Virginia, was anions those singled out for
special charges of deliherate cruelty and neglect of sick prisoners. Reliable
testimony by Federal officers was given (and officially suppressed) in
rebuttal of these charges; but there was one incident connected with this
prison hospital that is of unusual interest. At the time of the surrender
of Richmond, Hospital No. 21 was under the direction of Assistant-Surgeon
Alexander Tinsley. Richmond was captured on the 3rd of April. 1865: but
when the Federal prisoners found that they were to lose the kind offices
of this Confederate surgeon, they themselves petitioned that he be allowed
to remain in charge. This was accordingly done by order of Major-General
Weitzel. U. S. A. Surgeon Tinsley was later transferred with the prisoners
to Jackson Hospital and remained on duty in the service of the Zhiited States
Government until May 9th. or until there was no further use for his ser-
vices. His modest bill of $285.00 for his own services and for fuel and
board for himself and "forage" for his horse was presented to the United
States Government, but it was never honored, although the clsim was
brought up in the United States Senate at about the time the Hon. James
G. Blaine was making his wholesale and sweeping accusations of cruelty
against all the Confederate authorities in charge of the prisoners, including-
Surgeon Tinsley. The Federal order appointing Dr. Tinsley had printed
thereon: "Medical Director's Office, Army of the James, Before Richmond,
Fa." As the writer was preparing the order, however, he triumphantly
drew his pen through the long-existent ''Before."
There can be no ouestion as to the high character of Surgeon Tinsley, as
well as to his unselfish devotion to duty. He testified, near the close of the
war, before a Confederate Committee of investigation : "I have seen many
of our prisoners returned from the North, who were nothing but skin and
bones. They were as emaciated as they could be to retain life. I saw two
hundred and fifty of our sick brought in on litters from the steamer at
Rockett's ; thirteen dead bodies were brought off the steamer that night.
At least thirty died in one night after they were received."
last two years of the war there was not even a tent of any descrip-
tion to be found in any of the armies of the Confederacy, save such
as were captured from the Federals."*
Many writers, including the distinguished editor of "American
State Trials," still refer to "The Dead Line" at Andersonville with
expressions of horror, and it has been often brought forward as
"prima facie evidence" that the Southerners were intentionally bar-
barous and cruel, doubtless in ignorance of the fact that a "dead
line" existed in Northern prisons. At Andersonville, this regula-
tion was an absolute necessity and "consisted of stakes with a plank
nailed on top and at a distance of twenty feet from the walls of
the stockade." Had it not been for this precaution, less than fifteen
hundred guards could never have held the thirty thousand and more
prisoners under their control. This "dead line" was well defined,
while in the Northern prisons it was in many cases wholly un-
If there be charges of neglect and brutality in the burial of
prisoners at Andersonville, the records show that the paroled pris-
oners were responsible to their comrades for this last duty. If there
be charges as to filth in the preparation of food and cruelty in its
distribution to the prisoners, it is to their paroled companions that
the complaints may be carried, for they were in charge of this office.
If there be charges of foul play, murder, and robbery of the helpless
sick by night, the paroled prisoners may answer for it. They there-
by made good their escape, and they are among those who testified
that another was guilty of deeds they themselves had committed.**
The best known and the only specific charges of cruelty officially
taken up for prosecution by the United States Government were
those preferred against Captain Henry Wirz, for a while Command-
ant at Andersonville prison.
The charges sustained by the Military Court which declared Cap-
tain Wirz guilty, were, in brief :
*Not only were there few implements manufactured in the South for
carpentering, farming, etc., but even nails were not to be had, "there being
but one solitary manufactory of cut nails in the limits of the Confederacy."
**At the close of the war, Brigadier-General Neal Dow, U. S. V., after-
wards the noted temperance reformer, and candidate for the Presidency,
went to distribute clothing to the prisoners. He was greeted with profane
abuse, whereupon he turned to those in charge and said, in considerable
humiliation of spirit: "You have here the rakings and scrapings of
Europe." Among the brave men held prisoners at Andersonville, there was
just this mercenary element to be contended with, and great numbers of fine
American soldiers suffered terribly at the hands of such fellow-prisoners.
The Confederacy, on the other hand, with few exceptions, could not draw
upon any but its own American-born population. There was, nevertheless,
an evil element among the Confederates in the Northern prisons. These
were the men who took the "iron-clad oath." They were separated, in some
cases, from their former comrades. They were dubbed "galvanized" pris-
oners, and were given more and better rations than the prisoners who re-
mained loyal to the cause they represented.
"Thai he, the said Eenry Wirz, did combine, confederate and
conspire with them, the said Jefferson Davis, .lames A. Seddon,
Howell Cobb, John II. Winder, Richard P>. Winder, Isaiah II.
While, W. S. Winder, W. Shelby Reed, R. R. Stevenson, S. P.
Moore, - - Kerr, Late hospital-steward at Andersonville ; James
Duncan, Wesley W. Turner, Benjamin Harris, and others whose
names are unknown, citizens of the United States aforesaid, and
who were then engaged in armed rebellion against the United
States, maliciously, traitorously, and in violation of the laws of war,
to impair and injure the health and to destroy the lives — by sub-
jecting to torture and great suffering, by confining in unhealthy
and unwholesome quarters, by exposing to the inclemency of winter
and to the dews and burning sun of summer, by compelling the use
of impure water, and by furnishing insufficient and unwholesome
food — of large numbers of Federal prisoners, to wit, the number
of about forty-five thousand, soldiers in the military service of the
United States of America, held as prisoners of war at Anderson-
ville, in the State of Georgia, within the line of the so-called Con-
federate States, on or before the 27th day of March, A. D. 1864,
and at divers times between that day and the 10th day of April,
A. D., 1865, to the end that the armies of the United States might
be weakened and impaired, and the insurgents engaged in armed
rebellion against the United States might be aided and comforted."
II. "Murder in Violation of the laws and customs of War" in
certain specifications to the number of thirteen. In these "specifi-
cations," Captain Wirz is accused, while acting as Commandant,
'of feloniously, wilfully of his malice aforethought, making sundry
and several assaults upon soldiers, belonging to the army of the
United States, with a certain pistol, called a revolver, then and
there loaded with gunpowder and bullets whereby he inflicted mortal
wounds upon their bodies so that they died." Three soldiers were
murdered thus, in each case the "specification" stating, "whose
name is unknown." Specification No. 2 told how a soldier, name
unknown, was stamped to death by said Wirz. Another prisoner
was "tortured unto death in the stocks. 7 ' Several more died under
specially contrived cruelties, and others were fired upon by orders
from said Wirz. In each and every case, the name of the victim
The Military Commission declared Captain Wirz guilty of charge
I and of practically all of the specifications under Charge II, and
sentenced him to be hanged on the tenth day of November, 1865.
A few of the amazing circumstances connected with this trial
may be given here to shoAv that it was, perhaps, the only really
infamously unjust prosecution and conviction on record in the his-
tory of the jurisprudence of the United States, unless partial excep-
tion be made as to the condemnation of Mrs. Surratt and Dr.
Samuel A. Mudd, unjustly convicted of complicity in the brutal as-
sassination of President Lincoln by the demented Booth and his
ignorantly criminal accomplices.
In the first place, after ascertaining the nature and purpose of
the military court appointed, in violation of the Constitution of
the United States, to try Capain Wirz, the regularly employed coun-
sel for the defense withdrew from the case. Even permission to be
heard, according to law, was denied the prisoner. It may be added,
by way of a sidelight on the conditions of the time, that the three
men who had been brought forward by the same partisan leaders
for the purpose of convicting Jefferson Davis of complicity in the
assassination of President Lincoln had just been shown to be per-
jurers. Two had turned state's evidence against the third, Conover,
who was then in jail. It was determined that no chances for a
like failure were to be taken in the case of Wirz. It was, moreover,
easier to convict a subaltern than a high official of the Confederacy.
Captain Wirz was placed in confinement in the Old Capitol
Prison on the 7th of May, 1865 ; and, from that moment, the press
and people of the country were fed with stories of the "monster"
and "demon'' Wirz. As far as possible, all favorable testimony vol-
unteered by Federal officers and soldiers was suppressed. A victim
had to be produced by radical politicians and extremists in order to
keep the American people from learning (1) that the suffering in
the Southern prisons could have been prevented by the Federal Gov-
ernment and (2) that there were at least equally terrible privations
in the Xorthern prisons, a knowledge of which would have led their
countrymen to pour out their indignation on them instead.
In the second place, Captain Wirz was accused, by the terms of
Charge I, of conspiracy with Jefferson Davis and other officials of
the Confederacy, in deliberately planning the death of thousands
of Federal soldiers. Not a particle of evidence teas found that such
a conspiracy ever existed, yet Captain Wirz was convicted of this
grave charge, while his fellow "conspirators," a number of whom
were actually named in the Charge, were never even brought to
In the third place, the specific charges of murder brought against
Captain Wirz were made by only twelve to fifteen of the one hun-
dred and sixty former actual or alleged prisoners summoned or se-
cured by those backing the prosecution. At least most of these, and
perhaps all of them, like Conover, and his two infamous associates,
were perjurers. One of the witnesses upon whose testimony Judge-
Advocate Chapman laid particular stress, as being of a reliable and
truthful character j swore himself in as "Felix de la Baume, 1 ' a
nephew of Marquis Lafayette. Upon finishing his labors on the
witness stand, and before the trial was over, he was rewarded for
his trouble by bein^ appointed to a clerkship in a Department
of the Federal Government, while about the same time one of the
witnesses who seemed likely to offer favorable testimony for the
defense, was arrested in open court, and placed behind prison bars
before he could testify. Eleven days after the execution of Wirz,
the alleged Monsieur de la Baume proved to be Felix Oeser of
Saxony, a deserter from the 7th New York Regiment.*
Finally, on the day before the execution of Captain Wirz, a tele-
gram was sent out to the effed thai Wirz had made a confession
which implicated Jefferson Davis. At about the same time, a mes-
sage was sunt to Wirz, through the medium of his minister, Father
Boyle, thai if he would implicate Davis, his sentence would be com-
muted. Furthermore, in the deliberate effort to blacken the char-
acter of Wirz and to weaken the ell'ect of his declaration of inno-
cence, a telegram was sent out stating on high authority that the
prisoner's wife had attempted, on the 27th of October, to poison
her brute of a husband, although Mrs. Wirz was, at that time, hun-
dreds of miles away. To cap the climax, the body of the prisoner
was refused a Christian burial. It is perhaps significant of ulti-
mate justice at the bar of history, which Lincoln has truly declared
"we cannot escape/ 7 that the body of Wirz was placed in the yard
of the jail beside the body of Mrs. Surratt, who is now generally
regarded as the innocent victim of another military commission.
Surely, if Captain Wirz were "a tool" and guilty of the crimes for
which he was convicted under "Charge I," the men who so infam-
ously used him as such were far more criminal and deserving of
the gallows than their underling. Why were they, too, not hanged,
or at least brought to trial? The answer is given above in that
those responsible for the prosecution of Wirz knew that while he,
a poor subordinate officer, might be convicted in the heat of sec-
tional passion provoked by their misrepresentations, it was quite
another matter to try and to convict the great leaders of the Con-
federacy. They knew perfectly well that the best element — the
*Concernino the accounts of cruelty presented in regard to the alleged
"barbarous practice" of running down fugitive Federal prisoners with
bloodhounds, quotations from these very witnesses are sufficient to refute
the alleged fierceness of these "blood-thirsty animals." We are told by one
Mr. Goss, in his scathing denunciation of the Confederate prison officials,
how he, with a "rotten fence rail," held a whole pack of these ferocious
hounds at bay. Another, pursued for hours by a number of these ravenous
beasts, tells how. exhausted, he fell asleep only to be awakened by one of
them licking his face." Still another such writer unwittingly shows us the
real kindness of '"the terrible brute Wirz" by describing "the villain*' as
he came into the camp on sundry occasions to warn prisoners against reck-
lessness, lest there should be unnecessary loss of life.
As late as June, 1902, an article in the Century Magazine stated that,
"Jefferson Davis. President of the Southern Confederacy, was known to
have imported a pack [of bloodhounds] for breeding purposes. They were
ordered destroyed. The man detailed for this work was a brother of Mr.
George H. Meeker of Beatrice, Nebraska. He performed his task well,
for it is said that he found and killed no fe\ver than forty-seven bloodhounds
at Mr. Davis's home."
As a matter of fact, Mr. Davis not only did not import any bloodhounds.
but he did not own any dogs at all. In the September issue of the Century
Magazine the editors apologized for the error of their contributors and
stated the facts, at least as far as Jefferson Davis was concerned in regard
to this popular and historical misconception.
great majority — of the Northern people would learn the truth in
such a trial ; and learning the truth, they would find out and punish
the accusers instead of the accused.
Is it not time that the name of Major Henry Wirz be cleared of
undeserved infamy, just as the names of many other innocent men
have been cleared? Is it easier to let things go on as it is, so that
"one man may bear the blame for all? 1 ' If so, is it right? The
answer from all fair-minded Americans will be an emphatic nega-
The South in the Matter of Pensions
Money for pensions has been raised by this government through
a uniform system of taxation, bearing alike upon North, South, East
and West. The man in the South has paid his share along with the
man in the North, and his rate of taxation has all along been the
same. Yet there has been a most marked difference in the amount
of money received by the South through pensions as compared with
the hundreds of millions paid throughout the North. While the
Southern man has borne this burden cheerfully, complaining only
when corruption was especially rank, it is important to note that
this excess amount of pensions claimed by the North and paid to
the North is not confined to pensions of the War between the States,
but begins with the beginning of the pension system of this govern-
The North early began to lay claim to large pensions and to
receive them. From the year 1791 to the year 1833 this govern-
ment paid out in pensions $29,600,000. Of this sum, approxi-
mately $20,000,000 was paid to the North, while only $9,000,000
was distributed throughout the entire South. And be it borne in
mind that these pensions were paid for wars in which all fought on
the same side and in which the numbers furnished by the South
compare most faovrably with the numbers furnished by the North.
These pensions were for the Eevolution and for the War of 1812,
with perhaps minor wars, Indian wars, etc.
During this period there were paid out to the States severally as
follows : New York, $6,186,000 ; Massachusetts, $3,331,000 ; Penn-
sylvania, $2,664,000; Maine, $2,115,000; Connecticut, $1,912,000;
Vermont, $1,923,000; New Hampshire, $1,697,000; Virginia, $1,-
649,000; Kentucky, $1,192,000; and no other Southern State drew
as much as one million dollars for this period from 1791 to 1833.
This is a very striking comparison, and the causes for it lie in the
characteristics of the people.
Now, as to pensions of the War Between the States, the South
has received comparatively nothing, and yet the report of the Com-
missioner of Pensions iii the year L909 shows thai there had been
paid out up to thai year the enormous sum of $3,686,000,000, and
of this total the South had contributed its full share through a
system of uniform taxation throughout the country.
Moreover, the South has home the burden cheerfully, making
complaint only when some flagrant raid on the treasury was engi-
neered through the Congress, such as the service pension act of
February 6, 1907, where $58,000,000 per year was added to the
pension burden, already loaded with fraud, and millions paid out to
Northern soldiers, so called, who had never seen a battle Field nor
fired a gun.
As an example of the unequal distribution of national money
through pensions, take the report of the Commissioner for the year
1909, in which year $161,973,000 was disbursed. Of this sum, the
eleven States which composed the Confederacy received about $12,-
300,000, and the North received the balance, proportioned among
the States in part as follows: Ohio, $16,376,000; Pennsylvania,
$15,351,000; New York, $13,912,000; Illinois, $11,311,000; In-
diana, $10,640,000; and the other $80,000,000 was scattered
through the remainder of Northern and New England States, with
a small proportion sent abroad.
As far back as 1830 Senator Hayne, of South Carolina, complain-
ed that the pension system was being maintained as a heavy charge
upon the treasury for the purpose of keeping up the system of high
duties to which the South objected. He estimated that there had
been distributed up to that time about $15,000,000 to the North and
West and about $5,000,000 to the South. In Hayne's view the
South was paying the greater portion of the money which supplied
the treasury, while the public money was being expended chiefly in
the North. So, even though the complaints of Northern politicians
of this good year 1917 were true — and they are not — that the South,
being in the saddle politically, was legislating to her exclusive ad-
vantage and receiving an unjust due of public money, the South
could point to the past for her excuse and example.
Congressman Thomas U. Sisson, of Mississippi, said in a speech
at Memphis in 1909 : "If Mississippi received only one-fifth of the
amount which Ohio receives each year for pensions, she could relieve
herself of her present school tax and not pay one cent and yet run
her schools eight months in the year." This further striking state-
ment is made: "Kansas gets $5,423,000 in pensions and has a
population of about 1,500,000 — that is, she gets over $3.60 for every
man, woman, and child in the State. If Mississippi received as
much, she could run the whole State government on it each year
and have over $2,500,000 left each year. What she received each
year would not only run our entire State government, but would
pay all the State, county, and municipal expenses. The amount
paid is taken from the report for the year ending June, 1907."
Congressman Sisson takes the figures from official reports of 1900
and shows how sums are paid into the following States that would
equal per head for each man, woman, and child in the State the fol-
lowing: Ohio, over $3.50; Vermont, over $3.92; Maine, over $4;
It must be continually borne in mind that these sums are paid
into these States from a fund levied upon all parts of the country
alike; and while millions have thus been taken from the impover-
ished South and poured into the lap of the rich North, the South has
paid it uncomplainingly and has at the same time taxed herself
further for the support and aid of her own soldiers.
While thus from the beginning of this government the South has
paid its share of taxes and borne its share of burdens, receiving only
a minor portion of public disbursements, it has always measured up
with great patriotism to the demands of the government, and in no
way has this been exemplified more strikingly than in its subscrip-
tions to the liberty loans. Be it remembered that every dollar sub-
scribed to these loans by the South was subscribed from a purely
patriotic motive ami at a sacrifice, for in this section legal rates
of interest mount to eight and ten per cent, and money can be
readily invested and loaned at such rates, and the buying of a gov-
ernment bond paying three and a half per cent is a sacrifice ; while
in the wealthy North, with its great surplus of wealth and call
money lending as low as one per cent, it is no sacrifice to invest in
a stable government security at three and a half per cent. This
is not said in criticism of the North, which is measuring up to the
demands of this great war, but it illustrates that, while the South
from her scantier stores patriotically furnishes what she can, she
doe« it at a sacrifice not felt in the North and should receive credit
therefor, even though her aggregate subscriptions may not equal
the contributions of the far wealthier section.
[The above figures are obtained from Volume V., 'The South in
the Building of the Nation," in chapter on "Economic Conditions,"
written for the series by Professor Glasson, of the Chair of Political
Economv of Trinity College, who gives as further authority "Execu-
tive Documents 2d Bess., 23d Cong., 1834-35," iii., No. 89, page 32.
"The South in the Building of the Nation' 7 is published by the
Southern Historical Publication Society, of Richmond, Va., with a
long list of distinguished editors in chief, and the subject of "Eco-
nomic History" in under the charge of Professor Ballagh, of Johns
Injustice to the South
By Rev. Randolph 11. M'kim, D. I)., LL. IK, Washington, D. C.
A bishop of the Protestant Episcopal Church, speaking in Paris
a year or more ago, described the Southern Confederacy as "a
belligerent that was fighting to make slavery a permanent principle
on which to establish and maintain national life.'" A general of the
United States army, speaking to the Y. M. C. A. in Xqw York,
stated that "the issues at stake between the Allies and the Teutonic
powers are the same as those that were contested between the North
and South in the American Civil War — the forces of slavery and
disunion on the one side and the forces of liberty and freedom on
the other/' An eminent British statesman in Parliament gave ut-
terance to a similar sentiment, declaring that the struggle on which
the United Staes has now embarked is essentially the same as that
on which it embarked nearly sixty years ago in the War between
the States. And a great New York daily (the Times) has pro-
claimed to the world that there is an essential analogy between the
spirit of the Hohenzollerns and that of "the slave power with which
the United States came to grips in 1861."
These utterances, in my opinion, ought not to be permitted to
pass unchallenged, for they embody, first, a contradiction of the
facts of history, and, second, a cruel slander against a brave and
noble people. I submit that a careful and unbiased study of the
history of the epoch of the American Civil War establishes beyond
the power of successful contradiction that the soldiers of the Con-
federacy were not battling for slaves or slavery, but for the right
of self-government, for the principle lately asserted by President
Wilson, that "governments derive their just powers from the consent
of the governed." Neither was the war inaugurated and prosecuted
upon the Northern side for the purpose of liberating the slave, but
for the preservation of the Union.
In support of my contention I cite, first, the testimony of Abra-
ham Lincoln. In August, 1862, he wrote Mr. Greeley: "My para-
mount object in this struggle is to save the Union and is not either
to save or destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without
freeing any slave, I would do it ; and if I could save it by freeing all
the slaves, I would do it ; and if I could save it by freeing some
and leaving others alone, I would also do that. What I do about
slavery and the colored race I do because I believe it helps to save
the Union, and what I forbear I forbear because I do not believe it
would help to save the Union/ 7 ("Short Life of Abraham Lincoln"
by Nicolay, page 336.)
Mr. Lincoln, then, was waging the war not to free the slaves,
but to save the Union, and when he issued his Emancipation Proc-
lamation on January 1, 1863, he did not undertake to free all the
slaves, but only "those persons held as slaves within any State the
people whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States/'
(Idem, page 341.)
Slaves in States not in rebellion were not released from slavery
by the Emancipation Proclamation, but by the Thirteenth Amend-
ment to the Constitution.
Moreover, Mr. Lincoln declared that the freeing of the slaves
was a war measure, adopted solely because he deemed that it would
further the supreme object of the war — viz., the preservation of the
On the other hand, I maintain that the Southern States did not
go to war for the perpetuation of slavery, but for the preservation
of the principle of self-government. To say that the battle flag
of the Confederacy was the emblem of slave power and that Lee and
Jackson and their heroic soldiers fought not for liberty, but for the
right to hold their fellow men in bondage, is to contradict the facts
of history. Jefferson Davis, the President of the Confederacy, de-
clared that the South was not fighting for slavery ; and, in fact, he
embarked on the enterprise of secession believing that he would as
a consequence lose his slaves, for he wrote to his wife in February,
1861, "In any case our slave property will eventually be lost" —
that is to say, whether successful or not in establishing the South-
Lee, the foremost soldier of the South, long before the war had
emancipated the few slaves that came to him by inheritance ; where-
as his Union antagonist, General Grant, held on to those that had
come to him through marriage with a Southern woman until they
were freed by the Thirteenth Amendment. Stonewall Jackson
never owned more than two negroes, a man and a woman, whom
he bought at their earnest solicitation. He kept account of the wages
he would have paid white labor, and when he considered himself
reimbursed for the purchase money (for he was a poor man) he
gave them their freedom. Gen. Joseph E. Johnston never owned a
slave, nor did Gen. A. P. Hill, nor Gen. Fitzhugh Lee. Gen. J.
E. B. Stuart, the great cavalry leader, owned but two, and he rid
himself of both long prior to the war. (See article by Col. W.
Gordon McCabe in the London Saturday Review of March 5,
To this testimony of the most puissant men engaged in the con-
flict I add the testimony of the common soldiers of the Confederacy.
With one voice then and with one voice now the Southern soldiers
avowed that they were not fighting and suffering and dying for
slavery, but for the right of self-government.
I was a soldier in Virginia in the campaigns of Lee and Jackson,
and'I declare I never met a Southern soldier who had drawn his
sword to perpetuate slavery. Nor was the dissolution of the Union
or the establishment of the Southern Confederacy the supreme issue
iii the mind of the Southern soldier. What he had chiefly at heart
was the preservation of the supreme and sacred right of self-goy-
ernmnt. The men who made up the Southern armies were not fight-
ing for their slaves when they cast all in the balance — their lives,
their fortunes, and their sacred honor -ami endured the hardships
of the march and the camp and the perils and sufferings of the
battle held. Besides, it was a very small minority of the men
who fought in the Southern armies who were financially interested
in the institution of slavery.
But the Southern Confederacy is reproached with the fact that it
was deliberately built on slavery. Slavery, we are told, was its
corner stone. But if slavery was the corner stone of the Southern
Confederacy, what are we to say of the Constitution of the United
States? That instrument as originally adopted by the thirteen
colonies contained three sections which recognized slavery. And
whereas the Constitution of the Southern Confederacy prohibited
the slave trade, the Constitution of the United States prohibited the
abolition of the slave trade for twenty years. And if the men of
the South are reproached for denying liberty to three and one-half
million of human beings at the same time that they professed to be
waging a great war for their own liberty, what are we to say of the
revolting colonies of 1776 who rebelled against the British crown
to achieve their liberty while slavery existed in every one of the
thirteen colonies unrepudiated ?
Cannot these historians who deny that the South fought for
liberty because they held the blacks in bondage see that upon the
same principle they must impugn the sincerity of the signers of the
Declaration of Independence ? For while in that famous instrument
they affirmed before the whole world that all men were created free
and equal and that "governments derive their powers from the con-
sent of the governed," they took no steps whatever to free the slaves
which were held in every one of the thirteen colonies. No; if the
corner stone of the Constitution of the Southern Confederacy was
slavery, the Constitution of 1789 — the Constutition of the United
States — had a worse corner stone, since it held its aegis of protection
over the slave trade itself. We ask the candid historian, then, to
answer this question: If the colonists of 1776 were freemen fight-
ing for liberty, though holding men in slavery in every one of the
thirteen colonies, why is the tribute of loving liberty denied to the
Southern men of 1861 because they too held men in bondage ?
If George Washington, a slaveholder, was yet a champion of
liberty, how can that title be denied to Eobert E. Lee ?
Slavery was not abolished in the British dominions until the
year 1833. Will any man dare to say that there were no champions
of human liberty in England before that time ?
It will not be amiss at this point to remind your readers, espe-
cially your English readers, that the government of England and
not the people of the South was originally responsible for the intro-
duction of slavery. The colony of Virginia again and again and
again protested to the British king against sending slaves to her
shores, but in vain; they were forced upon her. Nearly one hun-
dred petitions against the introduction of slavery were sent by the
colonists of Virginia to the British government.
In 1760 South Carolina passed an act to prevent the further im-
portation of slaves, but England rejected it with indignation. Let
it also be remembered that Virginia was the first of all the States
in the South to prohibit trade in slaves, and Georgia was the first
to put such a prohibition into her organic constitution. In fact,
Virginia was in advance of the whole world on this subject. She
abolished the slave trade in 1778, nearly thirty years before England
did and the same period before New England was willing to consent
to its abolition. Again, in the convention which adopted the Fed-
eral Constitution Virginia raised her protest against the continu-
ance of that traffic ; but New England objected and, uniting her in-
fluence with tli at of South Carolina and Georgia, secured the con-
tinuance of the slave trade for twenty years more by constitutional
provision. On the other hand, the first statute establishing slavery
in America was passed by Massachusetts in December, 1641, in her
code entitled "Body of Liberties." The first fugitive slave law was
enacted by the same State. She made slaves of her captives in the
Pequot War. Thus slavery was an inheritance which the people
of the South received from the fathers; and if the States of the
North after the Revolution sooner or later abolished the institution,
it cannot be claimed that the abolition was dicated by moral con-
siderations, but rather by differences of climate, soil, and industrial
interests. It existed in several of the Northern States more than
fifty years after the adoption of the Constitution.
I said at the outset that the utterances which I quoted from sev-
eral prominent persons and from an editorial in a great American
daily embodied a cruel slander against a brave and noble people.
The comparison of the Southern leaders and soldiers — their motives,
their aims, their methods of conducting war — with the Hohenzol-
lern despots and their cruel officers and barbarous hordes of soldiers
is truly amazing. To show its untruth and its cruel injustice it
would be sufficient to quote the generous words of some of the most
distinguished soldiers who fought for the Union in the sixties —
such men as Gen. Francis Bartlett, Capt. Oliver Wendell Holmes,
and Gen. Charles Francis Adams, of Massachusetts.
Captain Holmes, long since an eminent justice of the Supreme
Court of the United States, said more than a quarter of a century
ago : "We believed in the principle that the Union is indissoluble,
but we equally believed that those who stood against us held just as
sacred convictions that were the opposite of ours, and we respected
them as every man with a heart must respect those who give all
for their belief."
And Charles Francis Adams declared thai "both the North and
the South were right in the greal struggle of the Civil War, because
each believed itself right."
Mr. Rhodes, perhaps the ablest Northern historian of the war,
declared thai the time would come when the whole American people
"will recognize in Robert K. Lee one of the finest products of Amer-
ican Life. As surely as the years go on we shall see that such a life
can be judged by no partisan measure, but we shall come to look
upon him as the English of our day regard Washington, whom a
little more than a century ago they delighted to call rebel."
To compare such a pure and exalted hero as Lee with a tyrant
like the Hohenzollern Emperor, or such a Christian soldier as
Stonewall Jackson with a heartless commander like Hindenburg
or a soulless tyrant like von Bissing, is an outrage upon the human
understanding. To compare soldiers such as those who followed
Joseph E. Johnston and Albert Sidney Johnston and the two Vir-
ginia commanders just named with the brutal and savage legions
that have desolated Belgium and France almost passes belief. And
yet the conspicuous authorities named at the outset of this article
have dared to say that there is an essential analogy between the
spirit of the Hohenzollerns and that of the Southern Confederacy.
Let them tell us wherein consists the likeness. Did the government
of the Southern Confederacy ever ruthlessly violate the freedom
of any other State? Did it cherish any ambition to establish its
dominion over any other part of the United States or of the
world ? Did it violate its plighted faith and scoff at a treaty as a
"mere scrap of paper" ? Is it not a fact that, with one or two ex-
ceptions, during all the four years of war the Confederate soldiers
in their condnct of war respected the principles of civilization and
humanity? Is it not a fact that when Lee in his offensive-defensive
campaign of 1863 invaded the State of Pennsylvania his soldiers
not only were not guilty of any barbarity or of any rapine, but so
respected private property that in the three weeks they were march-
ing and fighting on the soil of Pennsylvania they left behind them
not a single print of the iron hoof of war? And yet men of God
and officers high in rank and editors of commanding ability have
not hesitated to institute a comparison between the Hohenzollerns
and what they are pleased to call the slave power of the South \
Let me say to them that if they would find a parallel to the spirit
of the Hohenzollerns as that spirit has been displayed in this tre-
mendous war against liberty, they will find it in the record of the
pillao-e and rapine and the desolation inflicted by the soldiers of
the Union and their camp followers in the Shenandoah Valley of
Virignia under Sheridan's orders and in the States of South Caro-
lina and Georgia under the orders of General Sherman.
Here is what Gen. Charles Francis Adams says on that subject:
"Sherman's advancing army was enveloped and followed by a cloud
of irresponsible stragglers * * * known as bummers, who were
simply for the time being desperadoes bent on pillage and destruc-
tion, subject to no discipline, amenable to no law ; * * * in reality
a band of Goths. Their existence was a disgrace to the cause they
professed to serve."
General Adams continues : "Our own methods during the final
stages of the conflict were sufficiently described by General Sheri-
dan when, during the Franco-Prussian War, as the guest of Bis-
marck, he declared against humanity in warfare, contending that
the correct policy was to treat a hostile population with the utmost
rigor, leaving them, as he expressed it, 'nothing but their eyes to
#eep with.' In other words, a veteran of our civil strife, General
Sheridan, advocated in an enemy's country the sixteenth-century
practices of Tilly, described by Schiller, and the later devastation
of the Palatinate, commemorated by Goethe." ("Military Studies,"
pages 266, 267.)
Note also that these acts of plunder and cruelty were not prac-
ticed by the bummers only, but by officers and soldiers. I have
recently read again the description of an eyewitness, that learned
and accomplished man, Dr. John Bachman, of South Carolina,
honored with membership in various societies in England, France,
Germany, Russia, etc., and the narrative reads like a description
of the devastation and cruelty and barbarian practices of the soldiers
of Tan Kluck in Belgium and France. One sentence may suffice
here : "A system of torture was practiced toward the weak, un-
armed, and defenseless which, so far as I know and believe, was uni-
versal throughout the whole course of that invading army." Not
only aged men but delicate women were made the subjects of their
terrorism. Even the blacks were "tied up and cruelly beaten."
Several poor creatures died under the infliction.
There, and not in the armies of the South, will be found a parallel
to the spirit of the Hohenzollerns.
The Secession of 1861 Founded Upon
By E. W. R. Ewing, A. M., LL. B., LL. D.,
Historian-in-Chief, S. C. V.
Author of "Legal and Historical Status of the Dred Scott
Secession rested upon fundamental law. The secession from the
United States by the several States of the South in 1861, which
led to the war between the Confederacy and the Federal Govern-
ment aided by the remaining States, was within constitutional right
found in that greatest governmental instrument, the Constitution
of the United States. That secession was the extreme means, in the
sense that the right of revolution as such a means is sometimes jus-
titled, for the purpose of preserving the sacredness and blessings of
written constitutional government, and for these purposes only.
Now brush the cobwebs and preconceived notions from the mental
vision and let us measure by the sternest logic and the strictest of
universally recognized rules these sweeping premises, standards of
conduct for which our fathers fought and for which many gave
their lives and for which our mothers made the most supreme sac-
First, then exactly what do we mean by secession? We are to
examine specific conduct, not the mere academic definition of the
word secession. The question before us is : What is meant by the
secession of certain States in the southern part of the United States
For the purpose of finding the legal ground upon which those
Southern States acted, it is immaterial whether we regard the
acts comprehended by the word secession in this connection as acom-
plished or attempted secession, but it is interesting to recall that
those in the exercise of the chief functions of the Federal Govern-
ment and a large part of Northern people generally insisted in 1861
(contrary to prior Northern doctrine and practice) that no South-
ern State could secede, could get out of the Union ; while four
years later, after the South had worn out her swords and had broken
her bayonets, and her brave boys were mostly asleep beneath the
golden rods of the summer and the withering leaves of somber
winter, the same pro-Union people generally and the functionaries
of the United States Government were sordid and cruel in holding
that the seceding States were out of the Union and as sovereign and
independent States had ceased to functionate as units of the Union !
So to avoid confusion of thought upon this point it may be assumed
without fear of successful contradiction that the seceding States were
at least de facto out of the Union. That a course of conduct does
not reach its final goal is no evidence that it was not legally taken.
So the secession here under consideration may be broadly and cor-
rectly defined as the act or acts of the Southern State's, each exer-
cising what we call its sovereign political powers, the purpose of
which was to sever allegiance to and connection with the Union.
The Union was and yet is the relation between each State and
a sovereignty known as the United States (or the Federal Gov-
ernment) which was created by and which exists by the authority
of that wonderful, written instrument known as the Constitution
of the United States.
Hence secession was the act of a State as such by which it at least
sought to become and for a time was de facto independent of the
United States, out of the Union, just as each colony became by revo-
lution independent of and out of the British Empire back in 1776.
Mr. Lincoln who was at the time as President the chief executive
of the United States took the position that no State could withdraw
and become completely independent. So as the Southern States
one by one persisted in the secession course Mr. Lincoln sent Federal
troops into the South to reestablish where broken and to maintain
Federal authority — not to free the slaves or affect in the least slav-
ery. To resist this invasion by armed force the seceding States
raised troops to defend the newly asserted independence, just as the
colonies did back in 1776 with regard to Great Britain, the South-
ern States organizing in the meantime a central government known
as the Confederate States of America. Thus the war came on apace.
Then since secession was either a withdrawal or an effort to
withdraw from the Union, to become completely independent of
the government of the United States, our first inquiry must be:
What is the relation of each state to the Union? In rinding this
relation we necessarily define the government of the United States,
also called the Federal Government.
The first thing we discover, as just intimated, when we come to
see exactly what the American Union is, when we really discern
the universally acknowledged fundamental of all fundamentals re-
garding its existence, is that the Constitution is the one source of
its power and authority, the sole source of its vitality; and so out-
side of or minus this Constitution there would be no Union, no
United States of America. This great, basal truth is one of the
settled and established facts concerning our American govern-
In 1816, when Marshall of Virginia and Story of Massachusetts,
two great constitutional lawyers, were members of the bench, the
Supreme Court of the United State, the entire bench concurring
"The government, then, of the United States can claim no powers
which are not granted to it by the Constitution, and the powers
actually granted must be such as are expressly given, or given by
accessary implication." (1 Wheaton (U. S. Keports), 326.)
In 190(5 Mr. Justice Brewer, speaking Tor that same high court,
said: "As heretofore stated the constant declaration of this court
from the beginning is that this government (of the United States)
is one of enumerated powers."
Then as showing the place where that enumeration is found the
court in 1906 quoted with entire approval the words from the decis-
ion, as written by Story of Massachusetts in 1816, "the United
States can claim no powers which are not granted to it by the Con-
This fact, a most basal truth, is found not alone in the decisions
of the courts ; but it is the great principle by which all departments
of the Federal Government are admittedly controlled. Tt is the
practical fact in all the activities of the general government.
There is another similarly fundamental truth, practical fact:
The United States government does not enjoy spontaneous or
original or inherent sovereignty; all of its sovereign powers are
delegated. This fact is just as universally and as practically recog-
nized as the other. "The government of the United States is one of
delegated, limited, and enumerated powers," is one of the hundreds
of statements of this truth repeated by the Supreme Court in case
of the United States vs. Harris (106 U. S. (Supreme Court Ee-
There is a dispute whether the States created the Federal
Government, delegated to it the powers it has, or whether it is the
creature of the whole people of the United States acting as a great
sovereign political unit. It appears to me, since the Constitution
went from its framers back to the States, back to each separate State
for its independent action, too clear for argument that it is the
creature of the States, particularly since three-fourths of the States
had to approve it before it became operative and three-fourths may
now amend it. (Constitution, Art. V.).
And all the more that this must be true when we recall that at
the formation of the Federal Government and before the ratifica-
tion of the Constitution, "thirteen dependent colonies became thir-
teen independent States;" that is, in other words, before the rati-
fication of the Constitution "each State had a right to govern itself
by is own authority and its own laws, without any control by any
other power on earth." (Ware vs. Hilton, 3 Dallas, 199 ; Mcllvaine
vs. Coxe, 4 Cranch, 212; Manchester vs. Mass., 139 U. S. 257;
Johnson vs. Mcintosh, 8 Wheaton, 395; Shivley vs. Bowlby, 152 U.
S. 14.) But we need not stop to debate this question here or let it
bother us in considering secession. At the time of secession we had
a certain kind of government, the same we have now, in fact; and
however it was created we know that the universally admitted facts
are that the Federal Government gets its vital breath from the Con-
sitution; that all its powers are enumerated in that Constitution
and are delegated through it.
Eegardless of from whom or from what delegated, this fact of the
delegation from some other completely sovereign power is an im-
portant one in considering secession. Many errors have been made
by confusing the powers of the United States as they might be under
the general nature of sovereignty with what they really are under
the limited and delegated sovereignty it really has. "The govern-
ment of the United States has no inherent common law prerogative
and it has no power to interfere in the personal or social relations
of citizens by virtue of authority deducible from the general nature
of sovereignty," as a recognized law authority correctly states the
actual practical and accepted fact. (39 Cyc. 694).
Then, the United States being a government of limited powers,
lacking any power over very many subjects which must be controlled
or produce chaotic confusion, it follows that the powers or sover-
eignty wherein the United States is limited, which were never en-
trusted to it, must rest somewhere. As summarized by a leading
law authority, deduced from universally admitted decisions, here is
full government in America :
"The powers of sovereignty in the United States are divided be-
tween the government of the Union and those of the States. They
are each sovereign with respect to the objects committed to it, and
neither sovereign with respect to the objects committed to the
other." (26 Euling Case Law, 1417.)
Here is the same truth in the language of the justices of the
supreme court of Massachusetts :
"It was a bold, wise and successful attempt to place the people
under two distinct governments, each sovereign and independent
within its own sphere of action, and dividing the jurisdiction be-
tween them, not by territorial limits, and not by the relation of su-
perior and subordinate, but by classifying the subjects of govern-
ment and designating those over which each has entire and inde-
pendent jurisdiction." (14 Gray (Mass. Eeports), 616.)
In 1904 the Supreme Court of the United States stated the same
fact in these words :
"In this republic there is a dual system of government, National
and State, and each within its own domain is supreme." (Matter
of Heff, 197 U. S. 505.)
In an opinion written for the court by Mr. Justice Day of Ohio,
the same high court in 1917 said:
"The maintenance of the authority of the States over matters
purely local is as essential to the preservation of our institutions as
is the conservation of the supremacy of the Federal power in all
matters entrusted to the Nation by the Federal Constitution.
"In interpreting the Constitution it must never be forgotten that
the Nation is made up of States to which are entrusted the powers
of local government. And to them and to the people the powers not
expressly delegated to the National Government arc reserved. The
power of the Staters to regulate their purely internal affairs by such
laws as seem wise to the local authority is inherent and lias never
been surredered to the general government." (Hammer v. Dagen-
hart, 247 IT. S. 275.)
Then, it is clear and certain, the Union is one of States — States
each of which is as absolutely and independently sovereign with
reference to the objects or affairs not committed to the government
of the United States as is the United States with reference to the
specific, delegated and enumerated objects and affairs within its
jurisdiction solely by virtue of the Constitution. And don't forget
the distinction: the sovereignty of the United States is delegated;
that of each State is Inherent. Hence, some light upon the sover-
eignty of the State may rightly be had from a consideration of the
nature of sovereignty in general.
These all-important facts were well understood and recognized
by the seceding States in 1861. The war of 1861 to 1865 did not
change the nature of our government or abate in the least the
dignity of the inherent sovereignty of each State. Over and again
the Supreme Court of the United States finds it necessary to em-
phasize this truth. Many persons are under the erroneous im-
pression that in any and all case of unreconcilahle conflict between
the United States and a State over any and all subjects the decision
and action of the United States becomes the supreme law of the
land. Nay, not so, as the above evidence proves to any open mind.
And I earnestly desire that particularly our young men and women
of the South will bear this governmental fact in mind when con-
sidering the secession by Southern States in 1861. And this, too,
by all means :
Each State has a most vital attribute the United States has not
under the law of the Constitution. Without the States or in case
of an ignored or otherwise abrogated Constitution, the United
States as a government, the Union, ceases to exist. On the other
hand, in the words of the Supreme Court in 1868 when there cer-
tainly were no pro-secessionists on the bench :
"The people of each State compose a State, having its own gov-
ernment and endowed with all the functions essential to separate
and independent existence." (Lane County v. Oregon, 7 Wallace,
71; Texas v. White, Id. 725; Pollock v. Farmers' &c, 157 U. S.
560; X. B. Co. v. U. S., 193 U. S. 348.)
There you are ! Don't stop to quarrel as to who or what created
this situation, this peculiar and dual government, this distinctively
American government These definitions and illustrations state it
as it was as soon as the Constitution superseded the Articles of Con-
federation, as it was at secession, as it is. The results of the war for
the independence of the Confederacy somewhat dulled the usual
conception of the reality, of the dignity, of the real nature of State
sovereignty; and my earnest hope is that we shall from now on
swing back to the true grasp of what the American States each is,
to that universal understanding which the States had when the
Constitution was adopted, for, after all, again it must be remem-
bered, that greatest instrument is construed in the light of the con-
temporaneous history and existing conditions at its formation and
adoption. "That which it meant when adopted it means now," said
the Supreme Court in Scott v. Sanclford, 19 Howard, 426, a rule
followed universally. (See, among many, Missouri v. Illinois, 180
XL S. 219; In re Debts, 158 IT. S. 591; S. C. V. U. S., 199 U. S.
Now, aside from its practical bearing upon the problems which
arise today and those which will press for solution tomorrow, here
is the bearing of all this upon the historical interpretation of se-
cession : If the delegated powers of the Federal Governmet are per-
verted by those exercising them, or misused or non-used, or powers
not granted are assumed, persistently, endangering the domestic
peace of a State, and this condition is backed and encouraged by a
great bulk of opinion in other States and aided and abetted by laws
of those other States, what is to be done by the suffering State?
What would have been the answer to this question by any State,
North or South, at the formation of the United States ?
Meet the issue squarely. Grant that such a condition has arisen,
where are we? Such a condition existing, there remain the sover-
eign powers of the State, the admittedly undelegated and inherent
sovereignty, having all the machinery of local government adequate
when not thus obstructed for the protection of the domestic peace,
for the defense of the property and lives of its citizens, "endowed
with all the functions essential to separate and independent exist-
ence," and thus equipped, thus endowed, mind you, under and
pursuant to the Constitution, according to the fundamental law.
Fundamental law because constitutionally recognized and guaran-
teed, notwithstanding the inherent and reserved powers of each
State are not derived from the Constitution. In the light of the
contemporaneous history and existing conditions, to this question
what would have been the answer of the people of any State when
they insisted at ratification upon and obtained the Tenth Amend-
"The powers not delegated to the United States by the Consti-
tution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States
respectively, or to the people."
The answer must be that each State would have said that thus
guarded the Constitution left to it, in the event of the conditions
which I have assumed, the right to defend the admitted inherent
sovereignty by any means adequate for that purpose. "The Con-
stitution is a written instrument. As such its meaning does not
alter. That which it meant when adopted it means now." "The
Constitution is to be interpreted by what was the condition of the
parties to it when it was formed, by their objects and purposes in
forming it, and by the actual recognition in it of the dissimilar in-
stitutions of the States."
There is another Fundamental rule followed in the interpreta-
tion of the Constitution, and that is that lighl is found in decla-
rations by the States when ratifying that instrument, in Imparting
to the United States the breath of Life which it would never have
had but for the action of three-fourths of the States concerned.
So also we go to the debates of the ratifying conventions and "to
the views of those who adopted the Constitution" and get all the
light possible from contemporaneous history and existing condi-
tions. (For leading authorities see 4 Ency. U. S. Court Keports,
pages 36 and 11.) One great mistake too many make in examin-
ing the legal justification of secession is to see it too exclusively in
the light of today and under the brighter conditions subsequent to
that war. Such an error is fatal to a just estimate of secession.
The question is: Did the States think they were getting into "an
entangling alliance" from which, come whatever woe might befall,
they could not withdraw? Do the light from ratifying conven-
tions, the views of those who ratified the Constitution, and the
weight of contemporary history indicate that the States meant
forever to surrender for whatever domestic evil might result some
of their most important attributes of sovereignty? I don't see
how any open minded and sincere mind can in the light of the
great bulk of the evidence upon these questions relating to the
formation and vitalization of the United States believe that under
any interpretation of the Constitution that instrument was meant
to take from the States or from a State forever the invaluable right
of resuming the delegated sovereignty when in the wisdom of the
people of a State such a resumption (that is, secession) appeared
necessary for domestic peace and to protect and make effective the
undelegated sovereignty. Mr. Justice Catron, of the Supreme
Court of the United States, quoting from the famous Federalist
"in favor of State power," said :
"These remarks were made to quiet the fears of the people, and
to clear up doubts on the meaning of the Constitution then before
them for adoption by the State conventions." (License Cases, 5
The great bulk of the people of the several then totally inde-
pendent States were afraid of the centralized power about to be
loaned to the United States Government ; and the right to resume
the delegated powers should the experiment become unhappy was
the great reason which brought the States to embark upon the
venture. They were sure they had fixed the fundamental docu-
ments so that they might legally, constitutionally and morally
rightly get out if any State so desired. Some of the ratifying con-
ventions sought to make assurance doubly sure, Virginia, for in-
stance, interpreting the Constitution as part of her ratification,
"The powers granted under the Constitution * * * may be
resumed by the people" "whensoever the same shall be perverted to
their injury or oppression."
New York followed by Ehode Island, as part of the res gestae,
with reference to the powers delegated to the Federal Government,
said that "the powers of government may be resumed by the people
whenever it shall become necessary to their happiness."
Applying with such evidence a proper reasoning deducible from
the general nature of sovereignty, it follows that the existence of a
sovereignty "endowed with all the functions essential to separate
and independent existence" must have the attribute of self-defense.
The right of self-defense implies the right to choose the method.
That is not sovereignty which has not the right of self-preservation.
Sovereignty without the right of self-determined existence is un-
thinkable. Sovereignty must be dignified by all that the word
implies. "As men whose intentions require no concealment gener-
ally employ the words which most directly and aptly express the
ideas they intend to convey, the enlightened patriots who framed
our Consitution, and the people who adopted it, must be understood
to have intended what they have said," correctly said Chief Justice
Marshall in Gibbons v. Ogden (9 Wheaton, 188. See also Kidd v.
Pearson, 128 U. S. 20; McPherson v. Blacker, 146 U. S. 36; Hodges
v. U. S. 203 U. S., 16.) There can be no such thing as limited
sovereignty. There is division of sovereign powers ; and that is the
condition under and by virtue of the Constitution in this country.
But sovereignty is a self-explanatory word and meant at secession
exactly what it meant at the adoption of the Constitution.
Shorly before leaving the bench in 1915 Mr. Justice Hughes of
New York prepared the opinion in Kennedy v. Becker (241 U. S.
563). As thus prepared this opinion was subsequently adopted and
delivered by Chief Justice White as the unanimous opinion of the
Supreme Court. Concerning the power of the State of New York
to control lands which were the subject of a treaty between Eobert
Morris and the Seneca Nation of Indians in 1797, the court says :
"But the existence of the sovereignty of the State was well under-
stood, and this conception involved all that was necessarily implied
in that sovereignty, Avhether fully appreciated or not."
Upon that impregnable position stood each seceding State in
In the South we are coming too much to whisper thai; "our
fathers did their duty as they saw it." We should be calling to
the world from the housetop that our Confederate fathers were
right. For historical truth we should speak in no uncertain terms
in the schools, should sound the facts in trump-blasts wherever the
subject is under consideration ; we should let the world know that
we know that those fathers are entitled to as much glory for their
defense of their wives, their mothers, their children, the domestic
peace of their State by wielding the inherent sovereignty to recall
the delegated and rhisued sovereignty, as in the defence of thai dele-
gated sovereignty against a European foe, a defence which the
South rendered gladly in our war with Spain* and which she ren-
dered so brilliantly in our war with Germany that the right of
local self-goverment might Dot perish from the earth! "To insure
domestic tranquility" — one of the five reasons assigned in the
preamble as the grounds for the establishment of the Constitution
of the United States — to better safeguard the lives of the women
and children of the South; to avert a destruction of some of the
State's most important inherent powers of sovereignty, — in short,
to escape imminent disaster involving the most vital and basal
human rights, the seceding States faced one or two courses of
action, short of the most servile submission to the greatest wrongs :
they must either withdraw from the Union ; or, remaining in the
Union resort to armed force against Northern States and the Fed-
eral Government. But the situation at that day can best be
appreciated when we consider the constitutional facts here
briefly outlined in the immediate light of what constituted the
imminent disaster, the ominous peril which shrouded the South in
increasing gloom. There is not space here, unfortunately, to dis-
cuss those powerful causes of that secession.** Those causes are
too inadequately presented in text-books and too little taught even
in the South. The production of this work, however, by the Sons
of Confederate Veterans is one among other happy signs of a
revival in the interest of historical truth. The truth and the whole
truth, is the battle cry of the great organization of which I have
the honor to be Historian-in- Chief, — a cry uttered from the soul
of sincerity and without the least thought or purpose of animosity
or bitterness. In the interest of history, for we do teach the chil-
dren something about the great war which followed secession, and
to be just to our Confederate fathers we must have a fuller grasp
of the fundamental legal grounds of secession and of the weighty
causes which moved the South — not that she believed in secession
at will but solely and as an extreme measure — to resume certainly
de facto the sovereignty delegated to the United States.
When the causes of secession are considered in the light of con-
stitutional fundamentals herein outlined, we more readily avoid
the illogical contention sometimes met which insists "that the
results of the war settled the question against the secessionists."
Well, well ! ! It is axiomatic that war settles no great question !
Didn't the better thinking part of the world gladly agree to reverse
the decision of a great question Germany thought she had settled
*Major Ewing, the author of this chapter, volunteered to defend the
United States in that war and rendered ardent service to the United States
in the war with Germany. — Editorial note.
**The author of this chapter hopes to reprint in booklet this contri-
bution together with a brief presentation of the causes of secession. For
particulars write Cobden Publishing Company, Ballston, Virginia.
forever by a decisive war? And didn't that reversal of the work
of gory, cruel brute force restore to wronged and outraged France
suffering Alsace-Loraine ? Ah, and more : America justly poured
out her blood and lavished her gold in that great Avorld war just
closing to help establish for the benefit of all people the principles
upon which rest our separation from Great Britain and the de
facto secession of the Southern States : the inalienable right of a
people to break away from an objectionable and hurtful govern-
There will never be another Southern secession. Nobody thinks
of it as a remedy for anything now; and no part of this Union
will ever dare repeat the Northern nullification of the Consti-
tution to avoid the evils of which — and not to destroy the Union
and not to protect or to perpetuate negro slavery — secession became
the remedy to preserve the sacred binding power of a written Con-
stitution without which the Union perishes certainly; and again
because the Federal Government will never again be as limp and
spineless and complacent in defending the South against such evils
as nullification and other wrongs by Northern States and some
Northern people, to escape all of which our fathers found secession
the one probably bloodless remedy, justified by fundamental con-
stitutional law, and the one available remedy with honor.
1/ie South and Germany
By Lyon G. Tyler, President of William and Mary College, Ya.
At the moment when the United States had declared war againsl
Germany, there seemed to be a concerted effort by Northern speak-
ers and writers to east slurs upon the old South by drawing analo-
gies between it and Germany. This course was taken without any
regard for the feelings of the present generation of Southern men,
who see no reason to be ashamed of the conduct of their ancestors.
Probably the most vicious of these attacks appeared in the Neiv
York Times. Under the title of "The Hohenzollerns and the Slave
Power," the spirit of the old South to 1861 is said to have been
essentially analogous to that of Germany. The slave power was
"arbitrary, aggressive, oppressive." "The slave power proclaimed
the war which was immediately begun to be a war of defence in the
true Hohenzollern temper." "The South fought to maintain and
extend slavery, and slavery was destroyed to the great and lasting
gain of the people who fought for it, so that within a score of
years from its downfall, the Southern people would not have re-
stored it had it been possible to do so."
Here is the old trick of representing the weaker power the ag-
gressive factor in history. An earlier instance of it occurs in the
history of the Times' s own State. The early New England writers
in excusing their own aggressiveness represent the rich New T
England colonies with their thousands as in imminent danger of
being wiped out and extinguished by the handful of Dutchmen at
New York. And so it has been with the Southern question. In
one breath the Northern historian has talked like the Times of
the "arbitrary, aggressive and oppressive power" of the South, and
in the next has exploited figures to show the declining power of
the South from the Revolution down to 1861. With its "inde-
fensible institution" the South's attitude w r as necessarily a purely
defensive one, and Calhoun never at furthest asked any more than
a balance of power to protect its social and economic fabric. The
North began the attack in 1785 with a proposition to cede to Spain
the free navigation of the Mississippi River. In 1820, it attacked
again when Missouri applied for admission as a State with a con-
stitution which permitted slavery. It attacked once more in 1828
and 1832, when, despite the earnest protest of the South, it
fastened on the country the protective tariff system ; and the attack
was continued till both Congress and the presidency w r ere con-
trolled by them. When in pursuance of the decision of the Su-
preme Court the Southerners asked for the privilege of tempor-
arily holding slaves in the Western territories until the population
was numerous enough in each territory to decide the continuance
of slavery for itself, it was denied them by the North. It is certain
that if nature had been left to regulate the subject of slavery, not
one of the Western territories would have had slavery — the odds,
by reason of emigration and unfitness of soil and climate, being
so greatly against it.
Did the slave power "proclaim the war" as the Times asserts?
Every sensible man knows that the South would have been very
glad to have had independence without war. But Lincoln made
the ostensible ground of the war an attack on Fort Sumter, when
after vacillating for almost a month, he forced the attack, contrary
to the advice of his own cabinet, by sending an armed squadron to
reinforce the Fort. Not a man was killed, and yet Lincoln without
calling Congress, which had the sole power under the constitution,
suspended the writ of habeas corpus, instituted a blockade, and set
to work to raise and organize an army to subdue the South. Presi-
dent Wilson waited for two years till two hundred American citi-
zens had been killed by the Germans, and even then took no hostile
step without the action of Congress. Who had the "Hohenzollern
temper" — the North or the South in 1861?
Did the "South fight to maintain and extend slavery ?" The
South fought for independence and the control of its own actions,
but it did not fight to extend slavery. So far from doing this, by
secession the South restricted slavery by handing over to the North
the Western territory, and its constitution provided against the
importation of slaves from abroad.
Slavery was indeed destroyed by the war, and it is perfectly
true that no one in the South would care to restore it. At the
same time we see no reason why we should be grateful for the way
in which slavery was destroyed. At the beginning of the Union,,
there was a strong sentiment in the Southern States, especially
in Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina, against the existence
of slavery, but the action of three of the New England States in
joining with the two extreme Southern States to keep open the
slave trade for twenty years through an article in the constitution,
and the subsequent activity of New England shipping in bringing
thousands of negroes into the South, made its abolition a great
No country ever waged a war on principles more different from
Germany than did the Southern States. Germany justified its
campaigns of "frightfulness" on the plea of necessity, but in any
result its national entity was secure. The South, on the other
hand, knew that failure in arms would mean the extinction of its
national being, but there were some things it could not do even to
preserve this, and so Eobert E. Lee commanded her armies on
land and Raphael Semmes roved the sea, but no drop of innocent
blood stained the splendor of their achievements.
While I am glad to say thai the North did qoI go as far as
Germany the general policy of its warfare was the same —one of
destruction and spoliation, and the campaigns of Sheridan and
Sherman will always stand in history in the catalogue of the cruel
The expulsion of the inhabitants of Atlanta and the burning of
the city was the prototype of the martyrdom of Louvain. Rheims
and its ancienl cathedral have suffered less from the shells of the
Germans than beautiful Columbia and Savannah suffered from
the torch and wanton depredation of the Federal soldiers.
In an article in a prominent magazine a writer quotes Lincoln's
Gettysburg address and states that these last words of his speech—
"That the nation shall under God have a new birth of freedom,
and that government of the people, by the people, for the people
shall not perish from the earth/ 5 described the great cause for
which Lincoln sent armies into the field. Here is the same lack
of logic and historic accuracy. The North had been antagonistic
to the South from the first days of union, but it was really the
jealousy of a rival nation. The chief elements that first entered
into the situation were antagonistic interests and different occu-
pations. Manufacturers were arrayed against agriculture, a pro-
tective tariff against tariff for revenue. Long before the quick-
ening of the Northern conscience, and while the slave trade was
being actively prosecuted by men from New England, that section
was particularly violent against the South. Its dislike of the great
democrat Jefferson went beyond all words, and he was described
by the Chief Justice of Massachusetts as "an apostle of atheism
and anarchy, bloodshed and plunder/' How much of real oppo-
sition to slavery was mixed with this old-time jealousy in the
Republican plank against slavery in the territories in 1860 no one
can exactly say. But with the exception of the abolitionists, all
persons — Democrats and Republicans alike — were unanimous in
saying that there was no intention of interfering with slavery in
the States. Lincoln was emphatically of this view, and so declared
in his inaugural address.
In instituting hostilities soon after, had he avowed that he
wished to raise armies to fight the South for a "new birth of free-
dom" and to keep popular government "from perishing from the
earth," he would have been laughed at. Had he avowed his pur-
pose of raising armies for the abolition of slavery, none but the
abolitionists would have joined him. He obtained his armies only
by repeatedly declaring that he waged war merely for preserving
Sons of Confederate Veterans
Commander-in-Chief, N. B. Forrest, Biloxi, Miss.
Adjutant-in-Chief, Carl Hinton, Denver, Colo.
Quartermaster-in-Chief, Jno. Ashley Jones, Atlanta, Cfa.
Inspector-in-Chief, K. Henry Lake, Memphis, Tenn.
Commissary-in-Chief, Chas. P. Eowland, Savannah, Ga.
Judge Advocate-in-Chief, A. L. Gaston, Chester, S. C.
Snrgeon-in-Chief, Dr. W. C. Galloway, Wilmington, N. C.
Chaplain-in-Chief, Eev. Henry W. Battle, Charlottesville, Va.
Historian-in-Chief, E. W. E. Ewing, Washington, D. C.
N. B. Forrest, Biloxi, Miss., Ex-Officio Chairman.
Edgar Scurry, Wichita Falls, Tex.
W. McDonald Lee, Irvington, Va.
J. W. McWilliams, Monroe, La.
J. Eoy Price, Washington, D. C.
Carl Hinton, Denver, Colo.
Clarence J. Owens, Washington, D. C, Chairman.
Ernest G. Baldwin, Eoanoke, Va.
Seymour Stewart, St. Louis, Mo.
W. W. Old, Jr., Norfolk, Va.
W. N. Brandon, Little Eock, Ark.
E. B. Haughton, St. Louis, Mo.
J. W. Apperson, Biloxi, Miss.
Carl Hinton, Denver, Colo.
Army No. Va. Dept., Jas. F. Tatem, Norfolk, Va.
Army Tenn. Dept., B. A. Lincoln, Columbus, Miss.
Army Trans.-Miss. Dept., S. H. King, Jr., Tulsa, Olda.
Alabama, Dr. W. E. Quin, Fort Payne.
Arkansas, A. D. Pope, Magnolia.
Colorado, H. W. Lowrie, Denver.
Dist. Columbia, A. S. Parry, Washington, D. C.
Florida, S. L. Lowry, Tampa.
Georgia, Walter P. Andrews, Atlanta.
Kentucky, E. E. Johnston, Mayfield.
Louisiana, J. W. McWilliams, Monroe.
Maryland, Henry Hollyday, Jr., Easton.
Mississippi, D. M. Featherston, Holly Springs.
Missouri, Todd M. George, Independence.
North Carolina, Geo. M. Coble, Greensboro.
Oklahoma, Tate Brady, Tulsa.
South Carolina, Weller Eothrock, Aiken.
Tennessee, D. S. Etheridge, Chattanooga.
Texas, C. A. Wright, Fort Worth.
West Virginia, Ealph Darden, Elkins.
Virginia, S. L. Adams, South Boston.
South West, E. P. Bujac, Carlsbad, N. M.